Apple closes lower as analysts argue over early orders, production

|About: Apple Inc. (AAPL)|By:, SA News Editor

Apple (AAPL -1.6%) closed lower following Peter Misek's downbeat note and concerns about the fact delivery times for the iPhone 5C remain unchanged (pre-orders started today). Shares are down 8% from where they traded going into Tuesday's iPhone event.

Two of Apple's staunchest sell-side defenders, Brian White and Gene Munster, sprung into action again today. Echoing Misek's comments about 5S fingerprint sensor production issues - Digitimes and KGI reported about this in August - White admitted the "complexity" of the 5S is hampering production. But he added the unchanged 5C delivery times are simply due to healthy supply (the result of a "relatively straightforward" manufacturing process).

Munster's analysis of "U.S. consumer sentiment" for Apple's latest iPhones, as measured by Twitter commentary, indicates 69% and 67% of comments were respectively positive for the 5S and 5C two days after the launch event. That compares with 67% for the iPhone 5 last year. Of course, a major gap has opened up between the iPhone's market share in the U.S. and many other big markets.

Also: U.K. retailer Phones 4u says it has "seen double digit growth in [5S/5C] pre-registrations compared to the same period for iPhone 5 last year." Upgrades from the iPhone users responsible for the blowout iPhone 4S sales seen in late 2011 stand to bolster this fall's sales.