back to article Apple shares plunge after Jobs 'heart attack'

Apple shares fell as much as 5.4 per cent this morning after a report on CNN's "citizen journalist" web site said Steve Jobs had suffered a major heart attack. According to Bloomberg, the computer maker/cult denied the report, and shares promptly rebounded. At last check, they sat at $104.51, up 4.4 per cent in trading on the …


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  1. Jon Teda
    Thumb Down

    Silicon Valley Insider Trading

    Just another wonderful example of our free press at work. Under the imprimatur of CNN I guess anyone can print anything. Accountability, ethics or common sense mean nothing to CNN because the people posting on the board are 'citizens' - so they must be right after all.

    CNN cannot possibly be responsible because every citizen deserves to be heard, right?

    When companies are run by people with the responsibility of 8 year olds why not just replace the executives with real 8 year old children? The children will at least learn from their mistakes.

  2. Solomon Grundy

    Faulty Market, Bad Ideas and The Lucky Few

    This is an excellent example of why short selling is bad (I know the fault observation arguments to). Some "unidentified source" can say anything they want and it can impact markets...

    The problem is that while legitimate shorting can provide some people with benefits illegitimate shorting can provide almost anyone with benefits if they are willing to break the rules. (that gets into why laws have a negligible impact on behavior, but that's another discussion)

    Apple's Jobs Has Serious Heart Attack

    Microsoft CEO Has Stroke: In Coma, Chances Poor

    Oracle Larry Ellison Killed at Pedestrian Crossing

    Any one of the above examples, coming from reliable sources, will incite market disturbances . The problem is that "reliable sources" are a commodity and some people can benefit from providing fictitious information. Many times the same "some people" have a vested interest in seeing something go down... Short Selling of any kind is not only a loophole that causes problems, it's really bad policy (selling something you don't own is fraud in any other circumstance).

  3. Mark Dowling

    Anything free worth what was paid for it

    Has Lou Dobbs even checked that this poster was in fact a citizen and not one of them job stealin' furriners?

    Note to CNN: when you cut journalist jobs in favour of so-called citizen journalism, that's what happens.

  4. Matt Bradley
    Black Helicopters


    I guess this is another demonstration of why Wikipedia has become such a valued commodity to those who have an interest in protecting the status quo, and why they seemed so hell bent on trashing Patrick Byrne therein.

    Clearly there are some people in the financial markets who recognise the value of a trusted medium which can be manipulated to disseminate a damaging rumour.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Another Naked Short-seller Scam

    Clearly, as Patrick Bryne and others have been writing about (and mentioned at El Reg), this is another "naked short-selling" scam, that made $$$ for them.

    The sooner the SEC wakes up and regulates NAKED short-selling, this will not happen again. Note that unleveraged short-selling doesn't cause these kinds of problems, as Byrne has repeatedly point out, to those that conflate the two instruments.

  6. Webster Phreaky
    Jobs Horns

    RIGHT ON!!!

    But I'd rather that Stevie Gods have a major stroke, a vegtable, hardly showing any life signs .... then he'd be just like all the piece of shit Mac's and iPods he's sold that croak and become useless just after the warranty expires! (I have FOUR of them)

    Censor this one too, Reg Bastards!

  7. Snert Lee

    Terms and Definitions

    Seems like what CNN calls a "Citizen Journalist", most folks would name "Anonymous Coward".

  8. Anonymous Coward

    @Webster Phreaky

    <quote> Censor this one too, Reg Bastards! </quote>

    Dude you've got that bikini thong all bunched up in the wrong place! Take it to one of the girls down the street and they will show you how to put it on correctly... OK so ask your mother then.

  9. Sleeping Dragon
    Paris Hilton

    A grand opportunity

    I hope Steve takes this time in hospital to reflect upon what he's done and go to the trouble of offering a device that's actually damn USEABLE. Macbook Air? Try burning to disk. Oh wait... you can't.

    iPod. I want to move my music around to a device of my choice. I paid to listen to it, I at least deserve the right to listen to it on any device I see fit. Oh, DRM rears its ugly head.

    I know, let's make a phone call. The iPhone seems to do the job. Yep, I can make a call on that. Fantastic. I can also do that on any other phone. I want extra features? Sure, I'll hand over my credit card. $999.99 for a fancy icon was an INSANE idea. Mobile internet and GPS are nothing new and certainly aren't exciting or unique to Apple.

    Apple products are very pretty, and even work up to a point - and that point is where decent functionality costs extra. I have tried plenty of Mac products, I'm a fairly open-minded type of guy, but there has been nothing to compel me to buy Apple goods.

    Steve, get well soon (if it's true), you're a very intelligent guy and I respect you, but your products SUCK. There's something about a laptop that's more than an inch thick - it feels substantial when you pick it up. Despite the obvious weight of larger laptops, they feel like they're going to last longer than five minutes. Sony seem to have this problem too, their products are too thin, too flimsy and too damn fragile to be practical.

    PH, she likes her plastic toys nice and thick too.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    WTF? OK you hate Apple (I'm no fan either...). But saying that you want the guy to suffer a stroke and live the rest of his days as a vegtable is just sick... Grow up!

  11. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Wall St. & Main St.

    Funny isn't the SEC is very passionate to get to the bottom and prosocute a rumor, but when it comes to the loss of $1 Trillion by Wall Street, they're pretty silent. I don't blame those who would want Wall Street to not exist and didn't want the recent bailout.

  12. Nanki Poo

    @ jon teda

    Funny how it's never the traders who get the blame!

    At the end of the day, it's a citizens' comment piece. If the trader or whoever it was that was thick enough to follow this up had any sense there would be no story! Front page of CNN you take notice of, MAYBE, but on a citizen input page!?!?

    Seems to me you want the say removed from the citizens. How some would love that. I wonder your motives somewhat, a bit of a flame there in the wrong direction (if it's a poor week could even make FoTW!).

    Remember these traders or whatever are the same wheeler dealers who bought packages of dodgy mortgages without investigating what their return on value was. Bit like buying a car sold-as-seen and not checking if it's got wheels!

    Which is why we are in the sh!t now and are having to pay our tax over to corrupt companies to retain this apparent Utopia and the huge bonuses to the boards of incompetent corporations.

    I say this as someone who worked with banking newsfeeds, etc. there is enough information around, if some tw@t takes rumour as fact and a load of twats follow him, that is not Freedom's fault, but stupidity of those people.

    Or, someone's covering their back, "but I saw it on CNN!" Treble short-sellers all round...?

    And the wishing ill health on Jobs? Get a life guys, it's only a piece of f*ckin hardware, that you'll chuck out when the next one comes out anyway! Otherwise you wouldn't have bought Apple!

    Oh, sorry, you didn't check if the wheels were there? Refer to above...


  13. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Let's see if this works.....

    Steve Ballmer was rushed to the ER just a few hours ago after suffering a major heart attack. I have an insider who tells me that paramedics were called after Steve claimed to be suffering from severe chest pains and shortness of breath. My source has opted to remain anonymous, but he is quite reliable. I haven't seen anything about this anywhere else yet, and as of right now, I have no further information, so I thought this would be a good place to start. If anyone else has more information, please share it.

  14. Sam

    Ballmer and Jobs have heart attacks

    The Giveafuckometer says no.....

  15. David Kelly
    Thumb Down

    @Webster Phreaky

    What a complete and utter moron you are. You want a guy who has had a HUGE influence on the I.T. industry to have a heart attack just so you can feel better about your "bad" purchase decisions? What a childish loser you are!

    PS. Six Apple machines in my house. 1 of them failed but yet I still buy Apple machines despite being a duo-decade dab hand at UNIX OS's and able to buy a Linux desktop at a fraction of the price. Guess you need a UNIX course or to grow up a bit ...

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not a problem with short selling

    This is more a problem with a company relying so heavily on one man, eg Steve Jobs. Normal companies should be able to survive when their chief exec pops their clogs. Imagine if you will Steve did pass away, the market price of Apple WOULD plummet. Not a good sign of a company's future.

  17. kondor vlastos

    Medical veracity -

    One would need a heart to have a heart "attack". Obviously, the report would have been noted immediately as "spam" by a medical professional.

    The medical truth is that pancreatic cancer (if that is what it is) is incurable and always fatal. It is more the character of the "market" that facts are ignored rather than acknowledged.

    It is also the character of Appleheads and the market that Jobs would be viewed as essential to the overall success of Apple. If that were true, then the stock is worthless beginning ----


  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Short selling is a scam

    Naked short selling is a fraud. Short selling has nothing to do with investing.

    But important people, with important friends make oddles of cash so it's ok.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    If you look carefully you'll see it reads 3 microgiveashits, the SI unit of caring.

  20. Moss Icely Spaceport

    No truth to the rumour then...

    ...that he will change his name to: Steve Emballmer?

  21. Anonymous Coward


    Hee, what a Moron.

    You have 3 devices that fail and you go and buy a 4th...hee hee, you must be a used car salesmans dream.

    "I bought this car last month and it's packed up."

    "Oh ok, here buy this one instead"

    "Duuurr Ok"

    (repeat every month)

    Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain -- and most fools do.

    Dale Carnegie

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bloody hell people!

    At the Apple fan boys. grow up and stop worshiping expensive crap.

    At the twisted mofo's who want someone to have a stroke or heart attack. You guys are twisted and need help.

    Back to the original story....

    Anything that hurts Apple i good.

  23. sleepy

    is this the mafia?

    Although Steve Jobs is indeed the architect of Apple Inc, it's more than half built now and can be easily completed without him. His death/resignation would have little effect on Apple earnings for several years. What's going to develop over the next few years is even obvious to some outsiders, so you can be sure insiders know exactly where they are going, and after the cancer, succession is very well planned.

    Investors place stop loss orders to sell if the share price drops substantially. Short sellers know that any negative story, however dubious, creates a starting gun to "innocently" synchronize an unfounded short-selling raid, and now the financials are blocked from shorting, AAPL is a number one target. The internet broadcasts the starting signal (in this case from Henry Blodget initially crafted-for-ambiguity broadcast) round the world. Once the stops get knocked out in reasonable numbers, a bear raid is money for nothing, stealing from investors everywhere, including your pension, very likely.

    But the SEC does nothing. Deep Capture indeed. We need pre-borrow, for market makers too, and one day, or real time settlement.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Kondor Vlastos

    I'm not an Apple fan, but Vlastos' post contains blatant fallacies.

    Jobs was treated for an Islet cell neuroendocrine tumour. Treatment for this less aggressive form of pancreatic cancer has an extremely high success rate, and does not usually even require chemotherapy.

    The pancreaticoduodenectomy procedure involves removal of part of the small intestine, which can interfere with nutrient absorption. This is undoubtedly why Jobs looks thin these days, and is usual for patients having undergone this procedure.

  25. Edwin

    ...and they pay traders big bucks WHY exactly?

    Astonishing that rumour on a public forum can wipe out millions and millions of shareholder value, especially since it's the same thing that's killed half the banks that have been in the news the past four months.

    When are the traders, journos and politicians gonna learn to VERIFY THEIR SOURCES (elsewhere than wikipedia, I mean) and be held accountable for their actions?

    Oh wait - if they had a brain, they'd have a *real* job.

    Any trader dumping Apple stock this morning should be fired.

    (with apologies to El Reg for the sweeping generalisation above)

  26. Jessica Werkz

    @Bloody hell people

    "At the Apple fan boys. grow up and stop worshiping expensive crap."

    We are grown up and don't worship iPhones which are cheap - £99

    "Anything that hurts Apple i good."

    I take it English is not your first language. Anyway, grow up.

  27. Christopher E. Stith
    Jobs Halo

    selling something you don't own is not necessarily fraud

    People sell things before they have possession of them all the time. There are options markets, pre-orders of movies and video games, drop-shipped merchandise, contracts to supply items or services at a future date, and several other ways to legitimately sell something one doesn't own. Failing to deliver what is sold is where trouble would usually start (which is equivalent to naked short selling).

    Specifically misleading someone to change the value of an asset is another issue entirely, and is well outside allowed behavior ethically, morally, and legally. Short selling just before releasing such a false announcement as this would be the obvious way to make money here. Not making any transaction on the stock until it fell, then buying at the lower price would make someone a good deal of money, too. Knowing that the report is false and that the price will recover, buying low is a smarter investment than shorting beforehand.

  28. DR

    @short seller posts

    christ, you latched onto that buzz word fast didn't you?

    it was only a week ago that nobody outside of the fiscal world really knew what short selling was, and now I believe that there still isn't a great deal of people outside the fiscal world that know what short selling is!

    can anyone sum up just why this has to be short sellers?

    Why can't it just be someone dropping a [false] story to lower share prices so that they can buy low, then when the story is disproved they then sell high? when the price is resumed to normal.

    What on earth does this have to do with short selling?

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    After all, only the good die young...

    No comment

  30. Daniel B.


    "Knowing that the report is false and that the price will recover, buying low is a smarter investment than shorting beforehand."

    Actually, I think that with that knowledge, there's even a better strategy than that one: mixing both operations.

    1 - Short sell before the price goes down.

    2 - News breaks, share price goes down

    3 - Buy all possible shares during this time, using *all* the short sell money

    4 - Give short-sold stocks to buyer, keep the rest

    5 - Either keep the stocks, or sell 'em when stock price returns to normal.

    At the end, you'd get 2x the profits from the price differential, though you might also get the SEC to look at you suspiciously.

  31. Andrew Newstead

    Yet again...

    Why is it when something is posted regarding some part of Apple all the idiots come out.

    This is a report on the current mad state of our financial world, the Steve Jobs element is incidental to the message really.

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