Apple has managed to avoid a potential 15% increase in the US retail price of its major products after the Trump administration agreed a trade deal with China that pares back existing tariffs on imports.
Bloomberg reported that iPhones were due to increase in price by $150 in the US, right before Christmas. Such a rise in price could have been disastrous for Apple’s holiday sales, which would also have affected the iPad and Mac lines.
In an investor note Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, iterated how relieved Apple will be about the decision, saying ““rump delivered an early Christmas present to Apple. If this tariff went through it would have been a major gut punch for semi players/Apple and could have thrown a major wrench into the supply chain and demand for the holiday season.”
Apple pays import duties on some of its other major products like the Apple Watch, AirPods and iMac according to Bloomberg. If the levies had gone ahead, consumers would have seen notable hikes in price to the iPhone, iPad and MacBook – with little room for Apple to satisfactorily explain the reasons to the public.
We wouldn’t be surprised if Trump’s decision was somewhat swayed in part by Tim Cook’s influence. Cook stood by and let Trump say the Mac Pro assembly plant was brand new when he visited, when it had been there since 2012. Keeping on Trump’s good side has gained Cook some critics, but for Cook if the outcome is no Christmas price rises for Apple, he will take it – and likely has.