Facebook shares rise in extended trading as investors focus on earnings beat over revenue miss and disappointing outlook

Facebook Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies at a House Financial Services Committee hearing in Washington, October 23, 2019.

Erin Scott | Reuters

Facebook shares rose more than 2% in extended trading on Monday after the company reported better-than-expected third-quarter earnings while revenue missed analysts’ estimates.

Here are the results.

  • Earnings: $3.22 vs $3.19 per share expected by analysts, according to Refinitiv.
  • Revenue: $29.01 billion vs $29.57 billion expected by analysts, according to Refinitiv.
  • Daily active users (DAUs): 1.93 billion vs. 1.93 billion expected by analysts, according to StreetAccount.
  • Monthly active users (MAUs): 2.91 billion vs. 2.93 billion expected by analysts, according to StreetAccount.
  • Average revenue per user (ARPU): $10.00 vs $10.15 expected by analysts, according to StreetAccount.

The company announced its plans to break out its Facebook Reality Labs into its own reporting segment starting in the fourth quarter. That unit focuses on hardware, augmented reality and virtual reality products. The company’s other revenue segment will come from its family of apps, which include Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp and other services.

Facebook expects its investment in Facebook Reality Labs to reduce the company’s overall operating profit in 2021 by approximately $10 billion.

The company’s revenue increased 35% from a year earlier. Facebook’s net income grew 17% to $9.2 billion, from $7.8 billion a year prior.

The company said it expects fourth-quarter revenue of $31.5 billion to $34 billion. Analysts were expecting sales of $34.8 billion. Facebook said the forecast “reflects the significant uncertainty we face in the fourth quarter in light of continued headwinds from Apple’s iOS 14 changes, and macroeconomic and COVID-related factors.”

But all the recent attention on Facebook stems from a series of reports, initially from The Wall Street Journal, regarding internal research released by former employee Frances Haugen.

Haugen initially shared some of the documents she acquired during her time at Facebook with the Journal, and she then appeared in front of a Senate panel earlier this month to testify about her experiences at the company. Since then, Haugen has released the documents to several more news outlets, leading to additional news articles.

The reports show that Facebook is aware of many of the harms its apps and services cause but either doesn’t rectify the issues or struggles to address them. More documents are expected to be shared daily over the coming weeks.

Since Haugen began leaking documents and testifying, another whistleblower has submitted an affidavit with allegations about Facebook’s behavior, and previous whistleblower Sophie Zhang has again spoken up against the company.

Facebook’s call with analysts on Monday afternoon will be the first time CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks publicly since Haugen began releasing documents. Zuckerberg addressed some of the claims made by Haugen and the Journal in a Facebook post on Oct. 5.

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