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Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) Stock Up 9% After Hours

Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) stock is up more than 9% in after-hours trading to $58.38 after comfortably beating analysts' expectations when it reported Q4 earnings Wednesday after the close.

The social networking giant posted earnings per share of $0.31, $0.04 better than forecasts. Revenue came in at $2.59 billion, also ahead of the $2.33 billion projected and up 63% year over year.

Mobile ads now account for more than half (53%) of revenue, up from 23% a year ago, and slightly ahead of Wall Street estimates.

What FB stock investors still want are answers to two huge questions…

Facebook (FB) Earnings: Watch the User Count

Multiple news reports have been telling us for months that teens are fleeing Facebook at a rapid rate for rival sites.

Digital consultancy iStrategy Labs released a study midmonth revealing just how many teens have bolted Facebook – and the numbers were ugly.

The social networking site currently has 4,292,080 fewer high-school-aged users and 6,948,848 fewer college-age student users than it did in 2011. That's more than 11 million users who have left in just two years' time.

A recent study from Piper Jaffray found that fewer teens say Facebook is "important to them." Just 23% of teens in the October 2013 study consider Facebook the most important site, a 42% decline from a year earlier.

We know from before how declining user data can weigh on FB shares… Word of teen defections overshadowed Facebook's impressive 2013 third quarter.

Shares originally jumped 15% to $52 after FB's earnings report showed a 60% increase in Q3 sales versus a loss in the same quarter a year ago. But the stock gave back all its gains and more, slipping to $46.50, after Ebersman's teen exodus comments came on the subsequent conference call.

And user count isn't FB investors' only question…

Why Marketers Hate on FB

Join the conversation. Click here to jump to comments…

  1. H. Craig Bradley | January 30, 2014


    Clearly there is a difference of opinion in Facebook's recent performance. Plus, today's volume ( Jan. 30) suggests to me like the stock may be manipulated, by somebody. There only appears to be a few big traders causing bouts of high volume and subsequent stock moves, either up or down. Volume was very heavy at opening, not unusual from past observations. It has held steady since then, but at much reduced volumes than at opening. In addition, there were instances of volume spikes when the stock and overall market was in decline at the end of last week and this Monday, as well. Somebody (Zuckerberg) was selling a lot of shares. In past trading sessions I noticed mostly low volume, but trending down- except for occasional spikes in volume when the stock moved up or down.

  2. H. Craig Bradley | January 30, 2014


    Funny how the teen viewership & user base is no longer important ( to Facebook), as they claim growth in "monthly active users" in the 35 and up age brackets more than compensated for any losses of youngsters. In addition, they claim that advertisers are more than happy with the user responses and profitability of ads placed with Facebook. So, which stories are true?

    Revenue is up, but I suspect its the "other" arrangements as much as direct ads placed on FB and responded to. Intangibles are a factor here, I suspect. One of the "other" arrangements is simple: advertisers are willing to pay more to place their ads on Facebook. They believe their ads will pay off. So, ad client demand is driving investor interest and share increases for now.

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