Apple Slides on Speculation of Lower iPhone 7 Sales Outside U.S.

Apple's iPhone 7 Plus.

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Shares of Apple Inc. slid Friday amid speculation that German research firm GfK issued a report suggesting iPhone 7 sales would be lower than last year, based on data in Europe and Asia.

Apple shares dropped as much as 2.7 percent as reports spread. The stock was trading down 1.6 percent at $112.80 at 3:11 p.m. in New York.

Business Insider said people who have seen a copy of the report say it claims that iPhone 7 unit sales are down 25 percent on an annual basis, compared with the iPhone 6S of last year. GfK’s report doesn’t measure sales in the U.S.

“Numbers on sales or market shares are confidentially provided to our clients and shall not be quoted or released to the public,” GfK said in an e-mailed statement. “We did not publish these figures for external release.”

An Apple spokeswoman didn’t immediately comment on the report.

A Taiwan-based electronics newsletter Digitimes reported earlier Friday that Apple told its chip partners that iPhone 7 chip orders would fall about 20 percent in the first quarter of 2017 from the previous quarter.

The unverified reports contrast with positive initial indications from U.S. wireless carriers, who said earlier this month that first-day sales of the new phones were better than expected.

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