updated 03:40 pm EST, Wed November 18, 2009
Number draws on October NPD figures
Apple is likely to sell between 2.8 and 2.9 million Macs in the December quarter, according to Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster. The forecast is based on October sales data from the NPD Group, which indicates that the month's Macs were up 7 percent year-over-year. Should Apple meet expectations, overall growth for the December period should be 14 percent.
The company is said to be gaining from the release of new iMacs, which increased October desktop sales by 45 percent, compensating somewhat for earlier deflated figures. The month's iPod sales were down 11 percent, but Munster cautions that more than half of December-quarter iPods and Macs tend to be sold in December proper, making long-term outcomes difficult to predict. The analyst nevertheless proposes that more than 19 to 20 million iPods will be shipped in the quarter.
Munster is holding to an "overweight" rating for Apple stock, matched by a $277 price target.