Alphabet reports solid third quarter results, announces clever stock buyback program

By Shawn Knight
Oct 23, 2015
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  1. Alphabet, the multinational conglomerate under which Google and its many smaller ventures now reside, reported impressive third quarter financial results that beat analysts’ expectations.

    Google’s holding company reported revenue of $18.7 billion with a profit of $4.7 billion, or $7.35 per share. Analysts were expecting $18.53 billion and $7.21 per share. Compared to a year ago, revenue rose 13 percent while profit jumped 27 percent.

    The Alphabet board also announced that it would buy back up to $5.0999 billion in stock (the actual figure is $5,099,019,513.59 which happens to be the square root of 26 times a billion – a subtle Easter egg). This, combined with the solid earnings report, was enough to send shares soaring. As of writing, Alphabet is up more than nine percent.

    As The Verge notes, investors have been asking Google to produce more details regarding its core business and its various moonshot projects for quite some time. That’ll finally happen now that Google is under Alphabet although it won’t begin until next quarter.

    The publication points to another interesting trend that has made itself clear for some time now. In Google’s core advertising business, its cost per click – what the company earns per ad – has been on the decline. This is largely due to the lower cost of advertising on mobile as well as the fact that Google’s business has been expanding to other regions of the world where ad prices are much lower than in the US.

    The good news for the search giant, however, is that the volume of advertising has been growing fast enough to outpace the decline. Google’s cost per click dropped 16 percent but its overall clicks were up 23 percent.

    Image courtesy zhu difeng, Shutterstock

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