Apple Retail Store Sales in Retreat, But Investors Haven’t Noticed

Apple Retail Store Sales in Retreat, But Investors Haven't NoticedTiming is everything in business. And, this week, as Angela Ahrendts officially lands at Apple to preside over the iDevice maker’s retail and online sales, the latest industry data indicates that Apple’s timing for a fresh start couldn’t possibly be better.

Needham analyst Charlie Wolf drew controversy last night when he reported that Apple retail store sales have dipped in recent months. Why? A lack of innovative new products from Apple and, simply put, nothing new or exciting in retail.

Unfortunately for Apple, Wolf says it will be “difficult for Ms. Ahrendts to accelerate Apple Store sales because we believe these sales have become hostage to Apple’s overall distribution strategy” and the “absence of new products that have typically supercharged growth in the past.”

Wolf says Apple same-store sales at its retail locations retreated 5.6% in the March quarter.

Regardless of the less-than-optimistic report, shares of AAPL closed above $600 Monday, setting a new 52-week high as momentum from the company’s latest earnings call is yet to subside.

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