Apple 2.0

Covering the business that Steve Jobs built

The best and worst Apple analysts: Q1 2014 edition

January 28, 2014: 7:52 AM ET

None of the analysts -- pros or indies -- got everything right this quarter.

Blue = pro, Green = indie

Blue = pro, Green = indie

FORTUNE -- This was tough quarter to call and none of the 47 Apple (AAPL) analysts we polled -- 29 professionals and 18 amateurs -- got everything right. Or even close to right.

Wells Fargo's Maynard Um, who came in first place on the top and bottom lines -- having missed EPS by only a penny -- came in 12th when his unit sales were factored in.

Aaron Rakers of Stifel Nicholaus, who came in first on all categories -- having predicted better than anyone the fall-off in iPod sales -- was 26th in the rankings for revenue and EPS.

Still, special mention goes to:

  • Cowan's Timothy Arcuri for missing Apple's revenue number by only $6 million, or 0.01%.
  • Societe Generale's Anthony Perkins for picking up late signals  and lowering his iPhone estimate last week from 56 million units to 52 million (actual result: 51 million).
  • Sand Hill's Chuck Jones and Nomura's Stuart Jeffrey for  correctly predicting the stronger than expected Mac showing.

There were plenty of bad calls.

  • The Braeburn Group's Ilari Scheinin overshot iPod unit sales by almost 100%.
  • BTIG's Walter Piecyk undershot gross margin by nearly 200 basis points.
  • And I don't know what to say about the congenially bullish Nicolae Mihalache, who has come in last place in two of the last four quarters. He is not helping the independents' cause. If he were a student in my class, I'd advise him to transfer out.

Below the fold: Our annotated master spreadsheet, with the best estimates highlighted in bright green, the second and third best in light green, the worst in red and the second and third worst in pink.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

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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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