Apple is the new, undisputed king of retail.
Blowing past Wal-Mart and Amazon, Apple – as measured by sales growth – was the dominant retail force in the first quarter of 2011, a period in which the Cupertino, California-based tech giant secured a staggering 20% of all sales growth among publicly traded retailers.
“Total U.S. sales among public retailers, including auto parts dealers, Internet companies, and electronic retailers, grew by $23.2 billion in the first quarter,” says retail sales expert David Berman. “After Apple, the biggest chunk of U.S. sales growth came from Amazon.com and Wal-Mart stores.”
According to USA Today, sales at Apple stores spiked 90% in Q1 of 2011 to $3.2 billion. The growth was undoubtedly lead by stellar iPhone and iPad sales.
Apple’s sales are “mind-boggling,” says Berman, whose quarterly DeeBee Index is closely watched by the retail industry. Berman’s New York hedge fund, Durban Capital, owns shares of Apple. “People don’t realize how much money has been diverted to Apple.”
Apple will report Q3 earnings next Tuesday. The consensus on the “street” is that Apple will post profits of $5.73 a share for the quarter – an improvement of nearly two dollars from $3.51 just one year ago.