At this point, all of the major tech companies have reported their earnings, and Google, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft are all within a few tens of billions of dollars or less of each other's market cap, making market watching a much more interesting practice than in recent years, when only Apple dominated. The company's shares slipped in late trading. Google advertising revenues were $32.63 billion in the fourth quarter, 83% of the total for Alphabet.
Asked whether Google had any plans to respond to efforts from big-game publishers to sidestep app store fees, Pichai signaled that the company had no plans to reduce the cut it takes from Google Play.
"With great opportunities ahead, we continue to make focused investments in the talent and infrastructure needed to bring exceptional products and experiences to our users, advertisers and partners around the globe", CFO Ruth Porat said in the earnings release. "By that we mean data centers and machines". This reflects our outlook for global growth in ads, search, YouTube and cloud, ' said Porat. Alphabet had 98,771 employees at the end of 2018, up 23 percent from a year earlier. But Porat said capital spending's growth rate would slow "meaningfully" in 2019.
Investors may see, for the first time, YouTube ad revenues broken out separately.
"While the core business is still growing impressively, the significant spending shows growth isn't quite as capital-light as had been hoped", said George Salmon, a stock analyst at financial firm Hargreaves Lansdown.
Before the results were released the company's share price had rallied after stumbling along with its peers past year. Earlier, they closed at $1,141.42 in regular NY trading. Excluding traffic acquisition costs, the revenue consensus was $31.3 billion, up 21 percent. That beat analysts' average estimates of $7.69 billion, or $10.87 per share.
Alphabet-Google's parent company-today announced that a net profit of $8.9 billion on revenues of $39.3 billion in the quarter ending December 31.
FILE PHOTO - The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London, Britain November 1, 2018.
"For a growth company, investment should be applauded", said Atlantic Equities analyst James Cordwell. "We are confident that Google will continue to have rising paid click volumes for the foreseeable future".
The loss previous year related to a one-time charge from new United States tax rules, while earnings since then have benefited from new rules about valuing Alphabet's dozens of investments in external startups. New privacy rules in Europe, known as GDPR, may have limited this data harvesting slightly, but that's hit smaller competitors more than the two digital giants. Alphabet's results in that division were higher than the $7.62 billion Wall Street projected. "The fundamentals of their advertising business remain intact". Losses, however, doubled on the year-ago quarter, checking in at $1.32bn. It also includes Verily and Waymo, health and driverless cars, respectively. Earnings per share were actually $12.77. Among the more damaging of those was its work on a China-specific search engine which ultimately caused questions to be raised by the U.S. government.