Facebook posted a lower-than-expected loss and reported strong third-quarter revenue growth Tuesday, cheering up the company's dejected investors who sent the stock up 10 percent in after hours trading.
The social networking company, which has seen its shares fall by half since its much-hyped initial public offering in May, said that it had sales of $1.3 billion in the quarter, up 32 percent from a year ago. It lost $59 million in the quarter largely due to a $431 million tax bill. The loss compares with a profit of $227 million a year ago.
The company said that it had gained almost 26 per cent more users over the year earlier period, with users active on a monthly basis now numbering over 1 billion. Its mobile customer base rose over 29 percent to 604 million users, and Facebook's rise in advertising to these users helped calm investors who feared the company would be unable to serve them with ads on the relatively small screens of mobile devices.
"As proud as I am that a billion people use Facebook each month, I'm also really happy that over 600 million people now share and connect on Facebook every month using mobile devices," said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and chief executive. "People who use our mobile products are more engaged, and we believe we can increase engagement even further as we continue to introduce new products and improve our platform."
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