Is Wall Street Setting Nokia up to Fail?


After good performance of their Lumia range in Q1 2013, with 27% sequential growth Nokia confidently predicted that they expect at least the same level of growth in the next quarter, which works out to around 7 million Windows Phones shipped in Q2 2013.

Given the pretty good performance of Nokia’s Lumia 520 and 620 this number seems relatively achievable, though recent performance by Samsung and Apple suggests a rather difficult sales environment out there.

Unfortunately despite Nokia’s optimistic guidance, analysts wants even more, and have estimated Nokia sold at least 8 million Lumias in Q2 2013 and are likely to be rather disappointed if Nokia does not hit their targets.

Forbes writes:

Nokia’s share price rebound since April has created a tricky trio of marks to hit…..  Nokia announces its spring quarter numbers and there are several important metrics to track. The massive feature phone volume decline between 4Q12 and 1Q13 has to halt – even 1-2 M unit sequential decline might be tolerable. The smartphone volume has to top 8 M units now that Nokia’s share price has bounced more than 30% from April lows and expectations have risen.

But another important metric is going to be smartphone pricing…Wall Street is expecting only moderate sequential APS decline in the smartphone unit – less than 3%. The possible problem here is that the demand for the cheap 520 seems to have grown faster than expected towards the end of the quarter, while the high-end 920 arguably faded faster than anticipated. This might mean that even as Nokia’s overall smartphone mix finally shifted decisively towards the new Windows Phone 8 platform, its overall ASP is now dropping faster than expected.

It seems somewhat unfair that analysts can set unrealistic targets and then hold Nokia accountable for not beating them, but that is the nature of the investment market these days.

Do our readers think Nokia is due to have a Blackberry-like share price massacre on the 18th, or will Stephen Elop be able to satisfy all the demands of the analysts and share holders? Let us know below.

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