Apple’s profits fall

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Apple sales hit a new record of nearly $171bn in the year to October, but the iPhone and iPad maker saw profits tumble in the face of stiffer competition.

The Californian technology giant said unprecedented demand for its iPhones helped to grow revenues by 9pc growth, including a 4pc increase in the fourth quarter to $37.5bn. “It has been a strong finish to an amazing year,” said chief executive Tim Cook.

However, annual profits dropped to $37bn from $41.7bn the previous year, while fourth-quarter profits fell by nearly 9pc to $7.5bn, as rivals such as Samsung heaped pressure on Apple to cut prices. Apple said it was likely to see margins fall even further in the run-up to Christmas, although part of this was down to a change in its accounting methods.