Apple reports record-breaking profits

US technology giant Apple has reported the biggest quarterly profit in history after iPhone 6 sales soar.

Apple reported a net profit of $18bn for the financial quarter ending 27 December 2014, thumping profits ever made by a public company. The oil giant ExxonMobil held the record with $15.9bn registered in the second quarter of 2012, according to Standard and Poor’s.

“We’d like to thank our customers for an incredible quarter, which saw demand for Apple products soar to an all-time high,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, in a statement.

Revenues increased by almost $20bn to $74.6bn from $57.6bn the year before.

“Our revenue grew 30 per cent over the last year to $74.6bn, and the execution by our teams to achieve these results was simply phenomenal,” added Cook. 

The company’s results were mostly driven by a surge in China sales of its latest iPhone. Apple sold 74.5 million smartphones over the three months, surpassing financial analysts’ forecasts.

iPhone’s gross profit margin, or how much Apple makes per phone, rose by 2 per cent to 39.9 per cent, mostly due to its larger iPhone 6 Plus model. However, there was no breakdown of sales per model.

Cook said that demand for phones was "staggering" during a conference call with a financial analyst.

However, the demand for iPads continued to fall, showing an 18 per cent drop in 2014 from a year earlier. Analysts believe that Apple’s reliance on one product as a revenue generator could backfire if the expected Apple Watch, out in April, does not sell very well.  

ExxonMobil is expected to release its fourth quarter financial results on 2 February.

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