Google, IBM report bullish figures
Technology giants Google and IBM both reported bullish figures last night for the final quarter of 2012.
Google, owner of the world’s largest search engine, reported higher profit as advertisers boosted spending to reach consumers during the holiday shopping season. Fourth-quarter profit, excluding certain items, rose to $10.65 a share, Google said in a statement.
Google gained from growing demand for its advertising as retailers poured money into online advertising and extended the season for buying gifts. Total spending in the US ecommerce industry jumped 14 per cent during the last two months of 2012 as retailers began promoting web-only deals earlier, according to ComScore.
Google shares rose in late trading, after earlier slipping less than 1 per cent to $702.87 at the close in New York.
The average amount advertisers paid each time a user clicks on a promotion fell 6 per cent, following a 15 per cent decline in the previous period. The total number of clicks advanced 24 per cent, after a 33 per cent increase in the third quarter.
At IBM, the world’s largest technology services company, earnings and revenue beat estimates on the back of growth in emerging markets.
Reporting after markets closed last night, IBM said quarterly net income rose 10 per cent to $6.1 billion, or $5.39 a share, from $4.71 a year earlier. Revenue dropped 1 per cent to $29.3 billion. Analysts had expected the company to report net income of $5.95 billion, or $5.25 a share, on revenue of $29.05 billion.
Revenue in Brazil, India, Russia and China increased by 7 per cent in the quarter, or 12 per cent adjusted for currency fluctuations.
IBM estimated earnings of at least $16.70 a share for the full year, above analysts’ consensus forecast of $16.57. Some analysts said IBM’s results were a sign that the tech spending environment was improving. – (Reuters/Bloomberg)