Amazon beats estimates with fourth-quarter sales up 21%

Net sales in North America, its biggest market, rose to $53.67bn

Net sales at Amazon rose 21 per cent to $87.44 billion in the fourth quarter, beating estimates. Photograph:  EPA/Friedemann Vogel

Net sales at Amazon rose 21 per cent to $87.44 billion in the fourth quarter, beating estimates. Photograph: EPA/Friedemann Vogel

 

Amazon on Thursday beat analysts’ estimates for fourth-quarter revenue, as its efforts to speed up delivery helped attract more shoppers during the holiday season, sending its shares up 10 per cent.

Retailers usually generate a majority of their annual sales and profit during the holiday period. The company forecast net sales in the range of $69 billion (€62 billion) and $73 billion for the first quarter. Analysts were expecting revenue of $71.65 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Net sales in North America, its biggest market, jumped 21.6 per cent to $53.67 billion during the fourth quarter. Analysts had expected revenue of $52.23 billion from the segment. Revenue from its lucrative cloud computing unit Amazon Web Services (AWS), which sells data storage and computing power in the cloud, surged 34 per cent to $9.95 billion. Analysts had expected $9.84 billion.

Amazon’s total operating expenses surged 21.8 per cent during the quarter to $83.56 billion. Net sales rose 21 per cent to $87.44 billion in the fourth quarter ended December 31st, beating estimates of $86.02 billion. – Reuters