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The Biz Quiz - 29 Jan 2015

Thursday, January 29, 2015
by Jim Riley

We're already at the end of January! Have you been keeping on top of the business & economics news? We're about to find out...

Launch The Biz Quiz - 29 Jan 2015

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iPopping profits for Apple

Wednesday, January 28, 2015
by Penny Brooks

Apple's revenue in 2014 was £160bn. To put that into perspective, it is more than the GDP of Portugal. The £12bn profit that they made in the last three months of last year is the largest profit ever made by a company, and the equivalent of that made by Tesco in ten years - and in the 2.44 minute report about all this on the BBC news tonight, they made another quarter of a million pounds. 

Largely, the company are crediting this vast inflow of cash to the success of the iPhone6, particularly the 'plus' model - Tim Cook told staff that the demand for the phone is 'staggering' and it has raised their gross profit to almost 40%. Does this mean that the phones are overpriced? As Rhodri Marsden points out in The Independent, if Apple was “overcharging” for its iOS devices, would it have sold a billion of them? In particular, would sales revenue in China be rising by 70%, as the company reaps the benefits of its deal with the world's biggest mobile network, China Mobile? 

However, it may be cannibalising sales of the iPad, which are falling, and this massive iPhone success does leave Apple with the problem of wondering how they can follow this. The Apple Watch is to be launched in April, but there are concerns that it may be a product which only appeals to geeks, not to the mass market, rather like Google Glass. Another concern for the business is the strength of the dollar, which means that foreign currency earnings translate into fewer dollars. Tim Cook complained of "fierce foreign exchange volatility", which  shaved 4% from its first-quarter revenue. And finally, it joins many other mega multinationals in coming in for criticism over the amount of taxes it pays back home in the US. The next question is likely to be whether it can maintain this performance into 2015.

The Biz Quiz - 23 January 2015

Thursday, January 22, 2015
by Jim Riley

Here is the latest edition of The Biz Quiz! Good luck!

Launch The Biz Quiz - 23 January 2015

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