Apple's Profit Margin and Sales Beat Analysts' Expectations

Apple Inc has entered into a long-term supply agreement with Toshiba Corp for NAND-type flash chips in a sign that the chip market could be on the road to recovery.

Apple made a $500 million prepayment to the loss-making Japanese chipmaker at the beginning of July, a transcript of Apple's conference call with analysts on its consensus-beating results on Tuesday showed.

Apple's profit margin and sales of its iPhones and Macs in the April-June quarter beat analysts' expectations, and the firm is looking to lock in component supplies and prices, Reuters reports.

Apple posted a 12 percent gain in sales and a 15 percent increase in third-quarter profit, even as other technology companies cope with waning demand from consumers and businesses. Yahoo! Inc. , owner of the second most-visited group of Web sites in the U.S., reported sales yesterday that failed to top analysts’ estimates. The company’s forecast also signaled that demand for online advertising isn’t recovering , Bloomberg reports.

The technology bellwether not only beat analysts' consensus sales and profit estimates for its fiscal third quarter ended June 27, but it reported its second-best results ever on July 21 for a quarter that didn't include the winter holiday season. Revenues were up 12% from a year ago and profits jumped 15% as consumers snapped up iPhones and Macintosh computers, BusinessWeek reports.