Apple's share price rose by around 3% in after hours trade after it reported a solid set of results for its latest trading quarter. The company said it sold 52.2 million iPhones in the three months to March, which was only slightly below expectations.
Paul Sommerville, of Sommerville Advisory Markets, said most shareholders in the company would be relieved on the publication of these results. "Estimates have been taken down in recent months and the final outcome met and beat the lower expectations. The share buyback of $100 billion is colossal." he said.
But Mr Sommerville said he would caution investors in general about the results season.
"There are a lot of companies coming out with good results, but the share price is not reflecting that. We saw it last week with Amazon and Caterpillar. There are big funds selling into good news. Caution is necessary," he advised.
One company that is reporting tonight is electric carmaker Tesla. Paul Sommerville said Tesco was one set of results to watch. "It's performing extremely badly. It has a lot of debt. I'd expect huge problems ahead. There are a lot of hedge funds out there betting against the company. 28% of the shares are being bet against the whole company. It's a very bad investment."
He said he believed the overall stock market wasn't far off testing the lows reached in February of this year when there was a massive stock sell off. "We had another sell off in mid-March. The markets haven't tested those lows again but we're not too far away. The stock market may be under pressure between now and the summer."
All of this comes as the dollar soars to a four month high against its peers. "In 2017, the euro strengthened 11% against the dollar. It's a different story this year. The dollar is up 5% in the last few months. With interest rates going up in the US and bond yields nearly 3% - that all helps the dollar. We expect it to strengthen down towards €1.18 against the euro," the analyst concluded.
MORNING BRIEFS - Shares in Snapchat's parent group, Snap, fell 17% last night as it acknowledged that the app's new look made it less attractive to users. The company warned growth and revenue could slow substantially in the second quarter.
*** The US dollar is at its highest level in four months against major peers. The greenback had been under pressure until recent days from, among other things, the threat of a trade war between the US and some trading partners. The US Federal Reserve concludes its two day meeting tonight and it is expected to lay the groundwork for another interest rate hike next month.
*** Apple has announced a $100 billion share buyback and also said it would pay an enhanced quarterly dividend of 73 cents a share. The company reported a 16% increase in revenue for the three months to March to over $61 billion.
*** Preliminary estimates of growth in the euro zone for the first quarter are due out later this morning. They will be viewed as a strong signal as to whether the bloc's economic recovery will continue in 2018. Last week, Mario Draghi acknowledged that growth could moderate after data pointed to a slow start to the year.
*** Car-maker Tesla is expected to announce a loss of more than $0.5 billion in its first quarter results later today. The car maker has been beset with problems including slow production of its Model 3 electric car.