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MarketScreener Homepage  >  Equities  >  Nasdaq  >  Apple Inc.    AAPL

APPLE INC.

(AAPL)
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U.S. appeals court reverses antitrust ruling against Qualcomm

08/11/2020 | 12:46pm EST

Aug 11 (Reuters) - A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday reversed a lower court ruling against chip supplier Qualcomm Inc in an antitrust lawsuit brought by the Federal Trade Commission.

The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals also vacated an injunction that would have required Qualcomm to change its intellectual property licensing practices.

The decision was a major vindication for the San Diego-based company, the largest supplier of chips for mobile phones and a key generator of wireless communications technology.

Qualcomm was fighting a May 2019 decision by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California. Koh sided with the FTC, writing that Qualcomm’s practice of requiring phone makers to sign a patent license agreement before selling them chips “strangled competition” and harmed consumers.

But the appeals court, in a 3-0 ruling written by Circuit Judge Consuelo Callahan, ruled that Qualcomm had no duty to license its patents to rival chip suppliers and that it was not anticompetitive to require phone makers to sign a license agreement.

"Instead, these aspects of Qualcomm’s business model are 'chip-supplier neutral' and do not undermine competition in the relevant antitrust markets," Callahan wrote.

Qualcomm praised the decision while the FTC called it "disappointing."

“The Court of Appeals unanimous reversal, entirely vacating the District Court decision, validates our business model and patent licensing program and underscores the tremendous contributions that Qualcomm has made to the industry," Don Rosenberg, Qualcomm's general counsel, said in statement.

The FTC's Bureau of Competition director, Ian Conner, said in a statement, that the agency "will be considering our options."

The case divided U.S. antitrust regulators with the Justice Department intervening to file a brief in support of Qualcomm.

The Justice Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Qualcomm shares rose about 4% on the news. The shares have been up from March lows as the company continued to show growth despite a sluggish smart phone market.

Qualcomm had argued that the FTC decision, if allowed to stand, would upend its business model by requiring it for the first time to license its technology to rival chipmakers and rework many of its patent licensing deals with phone makers.

Qualcomm won a pause in enforcement of the decision while its legal appeal played out and voluntarily changed how it structured some of its licensing deals for 5G technology. With the appeals victory and raft of new agreements signed with customers since the case was decided, Qualcomm is largely clear to resume conducting business as it had for decades before the FTC case.

Qualcomm's business model often prompted conflict with phone makers, most notably Apple Inc, which supported the FTC's case and mounted a separate antitrust lawsuit against Qualcomm.

The phone makers bristled at Qualcomm's insistence that manufacturers license its broad patent portfolio regardless of whose chips they chose.

Apple settled its case against Qualcomm in 2018 and signed a license deal and chip supply agreement. Other major phone makers such as Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and Huawei Technologies Co Ltd have also settled disputes with the chip supplier and signed license deals since the FTC case was decided. (Reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco and Jan Wolfe in Washington; Editing by David Gregorio and Leslie Adler)


© Reuters 2020
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
APPLE INC. 1.16% 115.17 Delayed Quote.59.84%
QUALCOMM INCORPORATED 1.54% 145.93 Delayed Quote.65.51%
QUÁLITAS CONTROLADORA, S.A.B. DE C.V. 0.48% 95.07 End-of-day quote.19.74%
SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO., LTD. 0.30% 67700 End-of-day quote.21.33%
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Financials (USD)
Sales 2021 314 B - -
Net income 2021 66 008 M - -
Net cash 2021 80 862 M - -
P/E ratio 2021 28,8x
Yield 2021 0,75%
Capitalization 1 936 B 1 936 B -
EV / Sales 2021 5,90x
EV / Sales 2022 5,55x
Nbr of Employees 147 000
Free-Float 99,9%
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Technical analysis trends APPLE INC.
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TrendsNeutralBullishBullish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 43
Average target price 126,12 $
Last Close Price 113,85 $
Spread / Highest target 31,8%
Spread / Average Target 10,8%
Spread / Lowest Target -34,1%
EPS Revisions
Managers
NameTitle
Timothy Donald Cook Chief Executive Officer & Director
Arthur D. Levinson Chairman
Jeffrey E. Williams Chief Operating Officer
Luca Maestri Chief Financial Officer & Senior Vice President
Kevin M. Lynch Vice President-Technology
Sector and Competitors
1st jan.Capitalization (M$)
APPLE INC.59.84%1 935 655
SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO., LTD.21.33%406 014
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WINGTECH TECHNOLOGY CO.,LTD14.35%20 028
FITBIT, INC.9.44%1 959
MERRY ELECTRONICS CO., LTD.-16.12%1 038