Google’s Earnings Top Expectations as Emphasis on Mobile Grows

Michael Teague  |

Google's (GOOG) earnings report for the first quarter showed that the company earned $3.3 billion, or $9.94 per share on revenue (minus advertising commissions) of $11 billion, exceeding the figures of the prior-year period during which the company earned $2.9 billion, or $8.75 per share.

The company says that excluding items, the earnings figure would have been much higher, at $11.58 per share, and well in excess of analyst estimates of $10.08 per share.

Total revenue added up to $14 billion without subtracting commissions, representing a 31 percent increase on the previous year.

The encouraging numbers are in large part due to a significantly more mild decrease in the average price of advertising. Over the past year and a half, the company has seen the average cost-per-click to advertisers drop by six percent in Q4 2012, and 12 percent in Q1 of the previous year. For Q1 2013, that decrease was only 4 percent.

Despite the efforts of its competitors, such as Facebook (FB), Google currently towers over the vast majority of the mobile search market, capturing about 93 percent of mobile search advertising money in the United States. Still, mobile ads bring in less money for the company than ads that are viewed on laptops and desktops.

This situation is expected to change in the coming years, if not months, and Google has been working itself into the best possible position to profit as users interface with the web more and more through mobile devices rather than traditional desktops or laptops.

The company’s shares dipped 2.13 percent in regular trading closing at $765.91, but the after-hours earnings release saw the company gain most of that back, as the stock jumped 1.70 percent to $778.90.

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Companies

Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
FB Facebook Inc. 143.66 3.47 2.48 24,709,084 Trade
GOOG Alphabet Inc. 1,028.71 12.18 1.20 2,192,533 Trade
NUAN Nuance Communications Inc. 14.32 0.08 0.56 2,622,422 Trade

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