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Amazon Q4 2018 earnings: AWS, retail, advertising, prime

Amazon's returns were at the top of Wall Street's expectations, but Seattle warned it might not do the same in the first quarter.

The company defeated the earnings of analysts and revenue forecasts. Wall Street estimates that the tech giant's sales rose nearly 20 percent, and its earnings per share (EPS) jumped nearly 50 percent in the fourth quarter.

But the e-commerce giant says sales in the first quarter will fall shy of predictions by analysts.

Investors felt the report was in step. In the recent trading after the release of the report, the company's shares fell by $ 3.97 or less than 1% to $ 1,715.00

Here's what Amazon published and how it compared to Wall Street's expectations and company results a year earlier:

  • Fourth quarter (Q4) revenue: 72.4 billion dollars. Analysts forecast $ 71.92 billion. In the same period in 2017, Amazon announced sales of 60.45 billion dollars.
  • Q4 EPS: 6.05 dollars. Wall Street predicted $ 5.55. In the fourth quarter a year earlier, the company earned $ 3.75 per share.
  • First quarter (Q1) revenue (company directions): 56 billion to 60 billion dollars. Analysts forecast $ 60.99 billion. In the first quarter last year, Amazon posted sales of 51.04 billion dollars.
  • Q1 EPS (directions): Amazon did not offer specific guidelines for the EPC, but predicted it would release operating revenues between 2.3 billion and 3.3 billion US dollars. Wall Street predicted $ 2.99 billion operating income for the quarter and $ 4.43 in profit before the report. In the same period of 2018, the company posted 1.9 billion operating income and earned $ 3.27 per share.

Amazon cloud and advertising businesses drove their results

Amazon's results once again rose from its cloud-based computing business. Amazon Web Services sales rose 45 percent from a year ago to 7.4 billion dollars. The unit reported operating income of $ 2.2 billion, which is more than two-thirds of the total profits of the entire company and was almost 61% of the fourth quarter of 2017.

The company also recorded continuous strong growth from the advertising business. Amazon's "other" income, mostly consisting of advertising, reached $ 3.4 billion in a quarter, up 95% from the same period the previous year. The growth in business took place slowly, from the fierce pace of the company in the previous three quarters, when sales increased by at least 123% over the year in each period.

News from the company's retail businesses were more mixed. Direct online sales of the company rose by 13% in the quarter of a year ago, and its sales through its physical stores – mainly from the Whole Foods chain – fell by 3% year-on-year.

Meanwhile, her North American business, which mostly consists of retail sales, but also includes an advertising unit and her business to sell goods on behalf of third-party vendors, rose 18 percent to 44.1 billion dollars. Its international retail business increased only by 15%.

However, the operating profit of the North American business in Amazon rose 33% to 2.3 billion dollars. And the operational loss of international business, debt-losing money, fell by 30% to $ 642 million.

Amazon's stock closed Thursday's regular trading to $ 48.30 or 2.9% to $ 1,718.73.

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