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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 July, 2004, 01:22 GMT 02:22 UK
Apple profit surges on iPod sales
Apple iPod
Music lovers have been snapping up the iPod
Apple Computer has said that quarterly profits more than tripled, driven by demand for its iPod music player.

Profit in the three months ending 26 June jumped to $61m (33m) from $19m a year earlier. Sales, meanwhile, surged to just over $2bn from $1.55bn.

The company, which produces the must-have gadget as well as computers famous for their stylish design, also said it would meet earnings targets for this quarter.

Apple shares climbed in electronic after-hours trading in New York.

Frayed nerves

The announcement may help reassure investors, many of whom have voiced concerns about future earnings growth in the technology industry.

Stock markets in the US, Europe and Asia were dented on Wednesday after Wall Street bellwether Intel trimmed its forecast for this year's gross profit margin.

Apple was optimistic about its outlook.

Chief financial officer, Peter Oppenheimer, said that: "In the markets we're participating in, demand looks good for us."

According to the earnings report, Apple sold 860,000 iPods in the past quarter, up from 304,000 a year earlier.

Demand for Apple's Macintosh computers also rose during the past quarter.

The company, however, is having problems with its supply chain and that may hurt profit in coming months, analysts said.


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