Yahoo! Scores on Earnings: Search Trumps Display

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global network conceptYahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) is out with its fourth quarter earnings report. This is actually the first full quarter with Marissa Mayer on board as CEO.

Earnings for the fourth quarter came to $0.32 in earnings per share on $1.221 billion in revenue on an ex-TAC (traffic acquisition costs) basis. Thomson Reuters had estimates of $0.28 EPS and almost 4% sales growth to $1.21 billion in sales.

Display revenue ex-TAC was $520 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, down 5% compared to $546 million for the fourth quarter of 2011. The number of ads sold on core Yahoo! Properties decreased approximately 10 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011. Price-per-ad on core Yahoo! Properties increased approximately 7 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011.

Search revenue ex-TAC was $427 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, a 14 percent increase compared to $376 million for the fourth quarter of 2011. Paid clicks on sponsored listings on Yahoo! Properties and Affiliate sites rose by 11% compared to the fourth quarter of 2011. Price-per-click increased approximately 1 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011.

Cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments were $6 billion at December 31, 2012. Yahoo! also said that it repurchased 80 million shares for a total of about $1.5 billion in the quarter and that brought the 2012 year repurchase activity to 126 million shares for some $2.2 billion.

Shares were trading at $20.25 shortly before the close and the $20.50 intraday peak is just under a new multi-year high as the 52-week trading range is $14.35 to $20.52. Thomson Reuters had a consensus target price of $19.94 before the effects of Monday's earnings report.

Yahoo! shares are trading up 4% at $21.10 in the after-hours report now that earnings have been released.


Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Earnings, Internet, Technology, Technology Companies Tagged: YHOO
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