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Facebook earnings beat Street

5:16 PM, Jan 30, 2013   |    comments
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By Scott Martin
USA TODAY

SAN FRANCISCO - Facebook's fourth-quarter profit today topped analysts' predictions but mobile results may have come up shy of some forecasts.

Facebook reported a 41% jump in revenue from a year ago's $1.1 billion, beating the 35% growth prediction from a survey of analysts from Thomson Reuters. The social media giant reported earnings of 17 cents per share, above the expected 15 cents, on revenue of $1.59 billion. Analysts were expecting $1.53 billion in revenue.

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Wall Street had forecast mobile to make up as much as 24% share of Facebook's overall revenue in the fourth quarter, a figure that came in at 23%.

Facebook shares were down 4% to $29.99 in after-hours trading following the report.

The results serve as a bellwether of progress for social advertising, online games and mobile.

Facebook's full-year revenue remains dwarfed by Google's, which last year topped $40 billion.

The social network held the No. 1 spot in U.S. mobile display advertising revenue in 2012, taking 18.4% of the market, according to eMarketer.

Mobile advertising is poised to boom. The smaller ad forms saw sizzling growth of 180% to $4 billion in 2012, and are forecast to hit $7.2 billion in 2013, according to eMarketer.

Facebook has been slow to move on mobile until recent quarters. The company reported it saw 680 million monthly active unique viewers on mobile in the quarter, a 57% jump from a year ago.

Shares of Facebook have surged 40% in the past three months on optimism for its prospects, but the stock has remained below its IPO price of $38.

USA Today

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