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Analysts scramble to fine tune Apple estimates -- updated

July 16, 2012: 11:49 AM ET

A whole lot of changes one week before the company reports its fiscal Q3 earnings

FORTUNE -- A flurry of analysts notes crossed our desk this morning, most of them adjusting their estimates in advance of Apple's (AAPL) third quarter earnings report, scheduled for Tuesday, July 24.

  • Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster has fudged his iPhone unit sales numbers -- replacing a firm 29 million with an estimated 28-29 million -- and trimmed his revenue and earnings estimates to $37.1 billion and $10.19, respectively, from $37.6 billion and $10.32. 
  • Gabelli's Hendi Susanto has lopped 4.1 million units off his earlier iPhone projection (new estimate: 30.5 million) and trimmed his iPad, iPod and Mac estimates (to 14.8, 6.4 and 4.1 million, respectively). Bottom line: He expects Apple to report earnings of $10.55 on sales of $38.79, down from $11.65 and a Street-high $42.85, respectively.
  • Baird's William Power is sticking with his iPhone and iPad estimates (28.6 and 15.4 million units, respectively), but raising his gross margin estimate a full percentage point to $44.5, which bumped his EPS estimate up to $10.19 (from 9.90).
  • The Braeburn Group's Robert Paul Laitao, an independent analyst, also fine tuned his numbers upward, raising his revenue estimate to $40.39 billion (from $39.97 billion), his EPS estimate to $11.95 (from $11.80), his iPad estimate to 20.5 million (from 19.99 million) and his gross margin percentage to 45.3% (from 45.2%).
  • Jefferies' Peter Misek, whose changes arrived Tuesday a.m., lowered his iPhone and Mac estimates (to 29 million and 4.4 million, respectively), while raising his iPad (to 15.9 million and gross margin percentage (to 44.5% from 41.8%). Net effect: His revenue estimate fell to $37.3 billion (from $37.7 billion) while his EPS rose to $10.59 (from $9.90).

Two more on Wednesday:

  • Merrill Lynch's Scott Craig lowered his iPhone units to 28 million (from 31.2 million) and his gross margin to 43.5% (from 44.9%), which brought his revenue estimate down to $36.9 (from $38.7) and EPS to $10.20 (from $11.25).
  • Atlantic Equities James Cordwell moved in the other direction, raising earnings to $11.17 (from $11.08) on sales of $38.84 (from $38.56). His iPad estimate jumped to 17 million from 15 million and his iPhone number actually went up a bit, to 30.5 million from 30.4 million.

We'll do a round-up of all the estimates in advance of Apple's July 24th earnings call and follow it with our quarterly Earnings Smackdown, in which we compare projections with actual results and rank the analysts -- professional and independent -- from best to worst.

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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