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Facebook reports strong Q4 earnings despite year of troubles

03 February, 2019, 20:13 | Author: Sara Gill
  • Trust Trumps Money For Facebook As It Gears For 2018 Earnings

The number of employees for the Menlo Park, California, Titan as of December 31 was 35,587, an increase of 42 per cent year-on-year as a result of a hiring spree to help monitor the platform to weed out abuse, misinformation, and manipulation.

Total revenue earned during the quarter was $16.9 billion, with daily active users (DAU) at 1.52 billion, up 9 percent year over year.

Facebook's increased its user base in the U.S. and Europe, with profits up $6.9bn (£5.3bn) despite a year of scandals plaguing the social media giant.

The company faces demographic challenges as younger users shift to other platforms, seeing Facebook as less cool than it once was. Net income rose from $4.3 billion to $6.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2018.

"Advertising remains Facebook's main cash cow, and Chief Operating Officer (COO) Sheryl Sandberg had warned in April 2018 after the Cambridge Analytica data harvesting scandal that a few" advertisers had paused their spending with Facebook as a result of the controversy. Whereas Instagram stories have left Facebook behind having 500 million users per day.

"I'm confident that we're going to get there, but I want to make sure that we're giving the right outlook on how we expect the near future to go", said Zuckerberg.

The separation between Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram is about to get even blurrier. Monthly users jumped 2.2 percent from the previous quarter to 2.32 billion, while daily active users hit 1.52 billion, a 2 percent QoQ lift.


Of the 1.52 billion global users during the fourth quarter, 186 million were located in the US and Canada. Its products include Facebook Website and mobile application that enables people to connect, share, discover, and communicate with each other on mobile devices and personal computers; Instagram, a community for sharing visual stories through photos, videos, and direct messages; Messenger, a messaging application to communicate with other people, groups, and businesses across various platforms and devices; and WhatsApp, a mobile messaging application.

Why you should care.

It may also open Facebook up to additional data privacy issues. Aegis increased their price objective on Facebook from $206.00 to $215.00 and gave the stock a "buy" rating in a report on Wednesday, October 31st.

Executives were upbeat on a conference call with analysts, citing user numbers to argue that privacy travails and concern about Facebook's role in society haven't damaged the business much. As a group, research analysts predict that Facebook will post 7.4 EPS for the current year.

Analysts are watching to see how well Facebook's other services, including Instagram, messaging services WhatsApp and Messenger and its Oculus virtual reality division, play into its fortunes.

Amy Gesenhues is Third Door Media's General Assignment Reporter, covering the latest news and updates for Marketing Land and Search Engine Land.

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