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Riddle us this: E-tail giant Amazon barely makes a profit in Q4 2012, yet their stock sees a gain of 10 percent, while Apple makes a huge profit during the same quarter and gets punished by its stockholders.
Amazon announced its quarterly earnings for the all-important 2012 holiday season, and as usual, it's a mix of good news and bad news.
On the good news front, Amazon's Q4 2012 sales were up 22 percent to an impressive $21.27 billion, but the internet goliath barely managed to retain any of that income with a net of only $97 million.
“We’re now seeing the transition we’ve been expecting,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “After 5 years, eBooks is a multi-billion dollar category for us and growing fast 00 up approximately 70 percent last year.
"In contrast, our physical book sales experienced the lowest December growth rate in our 17 years as a book seller, up just 5 percent," Bezos added. "We're excited and very grateful to our customers for their response to Kindle and our ever expanding ecosystem and selection.”
As noted by TechCrunch, the news was met with apparent glee by stockholders, who sent Amazon's market price up 10 percent after hours, despite failing to live up to analysts' expectations of how much profit they should be making.
We're guessing Apple isn't feeling too bad, though -- all of that excess cash and hefty profits probably help executives in Cupertino sleep pretty well at night, despite violent fluctuations in their stock price.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter