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- Amazon shares soared as much as 11% in early Friday trading, driving the company’s market valuation above $1 trillion for the first time since July.
- The company announced fourth-quarter figures after Thursday’s close, topping estimates for revenue and earnings.
- Amazon Web Services continued to see revenue growth slow quarter-over-quarter, but net sales beat expectations.
- CEO Jeff Bezos said the company had more than 150 million Prime members around the world. Less than two years ago, Amazon announced it had 100 million global members.
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Amazon shares tore as much as 11% higher in early Friday trading, pushing the company’s market valuation above $1 trillion for the first time since July.
The e-commerce giant announced fourth-quarter financials after the market closed on Thursday, beating expectations for revenue and profit. Amazon Web Services, a rapidly growing revenue stream for the firm, also topped estimates despite a continued slowdown in sales growth.
The results showed that heavy investments in AWS, Prime one-day shipping, and its retail footprint were beginning to pay off after years of squeezed margins. The company said it spent $1.5 billion less than expected in the fourth quarter because of shipping efficiencies, though the new one-day service boosted total shipping costs to $12.9 billion, up 43% year-over-year.
“We are getting more efficient both in our transportation and delivery methods and also in our warehouses,” Chief Financial Officer Brian Olsavsky said in a call with analysts.
Here are the key figures:
- Revenue: $87.4 billion, versus the $86.2 billion estimate
- Earnings per share: $6.47, versus the $4.11 estimate
- Operating income: $3.88 billion, versus the $2.75 billion estimate
- AWS net sales: $9.95 billion, versus the $9.89 billion estimate
“Prime membership continues to get better for customers year after year. And customers are responding — more people joined Prime this quarter than ever before, and we now have over 150 million paid Prime members around the world,” founder and CEO Jeff Bezos said in the report. Less than two years ago, the company said it had 100 million Prime members worldwide.
Amazon first jumped above the $1 trillion threshold in early September 2018, becoming the second company to achieve the feat, after Apple. Shares dropped through the rest of the year before hitting the market-cap milestone again in July, though the company’s valuation didn’t stay above the lofty level for long.
The earnings beat followed a less enthusiastically received third-quarter report. Amazon topped estimates for revenue but fell below hopes for quarterly profits when it reported earnings on October 24. The profit miss drove Amazon shares as much as 8.6% lower in after-hours trading.
Amazon closed at $1,870.68 per share on Thursday, up about 1.3% year-to-date.
The company has 53 “buy” ratings, four “hold” ratings, and no “sell” ratings, with a consensus price target of $2417.03, according to Bloomberg data.
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