Apple Inc. shares hit a new high on Wednesday after the company said customers spent a record amount in its App Store during the final days of the holiday season.
App Store spending totaled $1.4 billion between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, up 16% from the same period in 2018, the Cupertino, California-based company said in a blog post. The stock rose as much as 1.6%, pushing its gains since the end of 2018 to 92%.
Rising spending on apps, and the success of wearables such as AirPods, highlight Apple’s ability to generate more revenue despite sluggish iPhone growth, according to Wedbush Securities analyst Daniel Ives.
That “speaks to the underlying strength that Cupertino is having monetizing its golden jewel installed base of 925 million iPhones worldwide," he wrote in a research note.
Gene Munster, a veteran Apple analyst and founder of Loup Ventures, said the App Store data are more evidence that Apple’s services expansion isn’t directly linked to iPhone sales, supporting his argument that the company’s shares should trade at a higher price-to-earnings multiple.
Apple also said App Store spending on the first day of 2020 reached $386 million, a single-day record and a 20% increase from last year.