My How Fast Things Change

In the span of just a few weeks one of the most celebrated CEO’s of the current era has gone from what can only be described as Hero – to Zero.

As I type this Apple™ the once celebrated $Trillion market cap phenom has lost nearly 40% of its value. Rounding out the sheer size of this loss is somewhere in the range of $400 Billion. Again, that’s lost as in “poof!” It’s gone.

As I articulated on my show today if one reads the letter that Mr. Cook sent out to describe the reasons for why Apple will miss its prior guidance, one can’t help but be dumbstruck at just how lame the defensive blame shifting truly is. The most glaring is the “It’s China, China, China!” rationale.

All I can say is “China, really? China surprised you?”

Let’s remember that Apple has told-and-sold the idea that no one knew the China consumer market as intimately as them. Again, let’s remember, it was Jim Cramer’s now famous “note from Tim Cook” back in 2015 that was supposedly used as the impetus for shaking off questions about China’s economy when the “markets” were in absolute turmoil.

As was told-and-sold back then the idea went something along the lines of “no one knows what’s happening on the ground in China more than Apple.”

Yet, now – suddenly – Mr. Cook was blindsided by things he stated took place in the second half of 2018. I’m sorry, but isn’t Nov. part of the end of the second half? Was there any warning during that earnings call? Hint: rhymes with D’oh!

This is just one item, for there are many more when viewed through any business acumen above running a lemonade stand. Actually there are so many they’re quite disconcerting.

However, it’s no longer just me asking these questions. Now – suddenly – everyone else seems to be questioning Mr. Cook. It’s funny how a sudden additional 10% free-fall in a stock will focus the mind into asking once unthinkable questions, is it not?

Here’s just a sample of what is already out there across many of the financial news outlets. I highlighted the relevant points. To wit:

(Source)

Why the above? It’s in direct response to Mr. Cook’s argument that “pricing” may have been a problem. Yeah, I’m not making that up. People may have been turned off from buying the new phones because they were maybe a bit expensive. That was a real reason given in Mr. Cook’s letter. But wait, there’s more! as they say in TV land. Again, to wit:

(Source)

Why the above? Easy, just read the highlighted. It says all one needs to know why Mr. Cook is in a very deep trouble. i.e., credibility is shattered.

Think the credibility issue is an overstatement? Then let me offer the following and you decide. Once again, to wit:

(Source)

To reiterate, the above is what I found in last few minutes of the trading day today as I’m typing this. Again, if this is the first wave then all I’ll say is things are going to get very ugly indeed for Mr. Cook if the stock continues to fall any further, for as I’ve warned the age of the Celebrity CEO – is over. This current debacle in Apple is proving that statement in-spades.

And for those that think I’m just piling on, let me add one last “picture” as they say in Silicon Valley that when I first showed it – the entirety of the business/financial media called it “crazy talk.”

From my article back in Nov. “The Question That Stunned The Global News” To wit:

Here’s the updated or sticking with the “picture” analogy – unretouched version. Again, to wit:

Suddenly all my “crazy talk” doesn’t appear all that crazy. But then again…

What do I know.

© 2019 Mark St.Cyr