Amazon sales rise 20%, easily top most optimistic estimates

July 27 01:24 2015

Amazon shares spiked Thursday after the online retailer blew past quarterly earnings and revenue estimates, boosted by growth in the North American market and cloud computing segment. The company posted second-quarter profit of 19 cents per share on $23.18 billion in revenue. Its sales rose 20 percent from the year-earlier period and were more than $300 million better than the highest of 36 estimates from analysts polled by Thomson

Wall Street expected to report a quarterly loss of 14 cents a share on $22.39 billion in revenue, according to consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters. The shares were up as much as 18 percent in extended trading after the results and were tracking well above their all-time high of about $493. Amazon’s operating margin—a metric analysts and investors eyed coming into the report—was 2 percent, compared with 1.1 percent in the first quarter. Operating expenses climbed 17 percent from a year earlier to $22.11 billion.

Sales for Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud computing business, rose to $1.82 billion, up 81 percent from a year earlier. Its operating income in the segment rose to $391 million, more than quadrupling from $77 million. Revenue in North America, Amazon’s largest segment, rose 26 percent year over year to $13.79 billion. However, the company’s international sales grew only 3 percent.

Amazon said it expected net sales of $23.5 billion to $25.5 billion in the third quarter. It projects between a $480 million loss and a $70 million income. Shares of Amazon have climbed about 34 percent over the past 12 months. At its price in the after-hours session Thursday, Amazon’s market capitalization was higher than Wal-Mart.