News Feb 02, 2017 02:53 AM EST

Apple Ends Losing Streak, Posts Rise In Sales After Nine Months

By Carlos Gutierrez

Tech giant, Apple Inc., posted a strong quarterly revenue in the period ending Dec. 31 after strong Christmas sales of its iPhone 7.

Apple reported a three-percent year-on-year increase in net sales of $78.4 billion, marking this as its strongest quarter ever. The company also posted quarterly earnings per diluted share of $3.36. International sales accounted for 64 percent of the revenue.

According to Apple, it returned close to $15 billion to investors through share repurchases and dividends during the quarter, bringing cumulative payments through the capital return program to more than $200 billion.

Tim Cook, Apple CEO, said in the Christmas quarter, the company has sold "more iPhones than ever before," as well as setting new records for revenues from its Mac, Apple Watch and services division.

The tech company announced it sold about 78.3 million iPhones in the three months to Dec. 31, an increase from the 74.8 million in the previous corresponding period.

"We're thrilled to report that our holiday quarter results generated Apple's highest quarterly revenue ever, and broke multiple records along the way," Cook said.

Apple stated it is expecting a revenue of $51.50 billion and $53.5 billion for the second quarter of its 2017 fiscal year, and its gross margin could range between 38 percent and 39 percent. The board of directors declared a cash dividend of $0.57 per share, which is payable on Feb. 16, 2017 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Feb. 13, 2017.

The company revolutionized technology with the Macintosh in 1984. Today, Apple leads in innovation with iPhone, Mac, iPad, Apple Watch and Apple TV. The company's four software platforms (iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS) provide seamless experiences across all the devices of the company and empower people with breakthrough services including the App Store, Apple Pay, Apple Music and iCloud. Apple has more than 100,000 employees who dedicated to making the best products on earth.

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