Apple Posts $14 Million Q2 Profit -- Apple Computer posted a small $14 million profit for its second fiscal quarter of the year on revenues of $1.474 billion for the quarter. Overall revenue was down 1 percent from the same time last year, but margins were up to 28.3 percent and international sales accounted for 47 percent of Apple's total sales volume. Apple shipped 711,000 Macs in the quarter, with fully 40 percent of them being notebooks - a strong debut for the new 12-inch and 17-inch PowerBooks.
Although Apple's profit isn't stunning, the company managed to increase its cash-on-hand to over $4.5 billion, and has reduced the time in channel of its products to four-and-a-half weeks. Apple says its next quarter should be relatively flat (e.g., a small profit), assuming no major news shakes the Apple tree. The market has been abuzz of late with rumors Apple may apply some of its considerable cash assets towards the purchase of Universal Music, although both Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Vivendi director Claude Bebear have denied Apple has made an offer for the world's largest music label. Apple is widely speculated to be preparing the imminent launch of a commercial music service to tie in with iTunes and the iPod; Universal Music's catalog would be a key component to any online commercial music service. [GD]