Another analyst lowers iPhone sales forecast, this time cutting iPhone XS Max by nearly half

Yet another analyst is cutting iPhone demand for the first quarter of 2019. As reported by Reuters, Citi Research has lowered its forecast from 50 million to 45 million for the quarter, primarily due to weak iPhone XS Max demand.

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While Citi is cutting its overall iPhone shipment forecast by 5 million, its iPhone XS Max forecast is seeing a much bigger hit. The firm is lowering its forecast for the 6.5-inch device by a whopping 48 percent for the first quarter of 2019.

In a note to investors, Citi analyst William Yang explained that the iPhone is entering a destocking period, which is not good for the supply chain:

“The material cut in our forecasts is driven by our view that 2018 iPhone is entering a destocking phase, which does not bode well for the supply chain,” analyst William Yang wrote in a client note.

The iPhone XS Max is the most expensive iPhone sold by Apple, starting at $1,099 for the entry-level model and making out at $1,449.

Citi Research isn’t the first to cut iPhone forecasts Q1 2019. Earlier this month, Rosenblatt predicted that Apple will cut iPhone orders for the March quarter of 2019. Rosenblatt, however, forecasted that the iPhone XR would take the biggest hit, with Apple cutting orders by some 2.5 million units. Ming-Chi Kuo also cut his iPhone sales estimates for the first quarter by 20 percent. Kuo predicts sales in the 38-42 million range (down from 50 million in the year-ago quarter for 2018).

The Wall Street Journal first reported last month that Apple had cut iPhone orders across the board due to difficulties predicting demand with a three-tiered lineup. Apple suppliers have also slashed expectations, likely due to Apple order reductions.

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