Facebook's Revenue Up by 40% as Mobile Ad Sales Strengthen

Facebook Inc. is making progress squeezing more money from advertisers on mobile devices--but not enough to shake the burden of Wall Street expectations.

Pictured: Facebook CEO Zuckerberg.
The world's biggest social network on Wednesday posted a 40% fourth-quarter revenue jump to $1.59 billion and reported its strongest quarterly advertising growth for all of 2012, as it ramped up its mobile business and offered new tools to advertisers to better target consumers.

Facebook's profit fell 79%, weighed down by spending on new initiatives and charges related to employee stock. The results were roughly in line with Wall Street projections.

Facebook's mobile advertising results particularly stood out. Over the quarter, Facebook's overall ad revenue rose 41% to $1.33 billion from a year ago, with mobile ads making up 23% of the total.

In the prior quarter, mobile revenue was $153 million, or 14% of total advertising revenue.

"Today there is no argument Facebook is a mobile company," said Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg on a conference call Wednesday.

Still, investors were lukewarm on Facebook's results after a recent run-up in expectations. Facebook's stock initially fell around 5% in after-hours trading following its earnings report, but selling tapered, with the stock later down 3.8%, or $1.19, to $30.05. Shares had earlier closed at $31.24, up 1.5%, before the report. The company's shares have been on a recent tear, rising more than 70% since September.

Wall Street Journal
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