Facebook beats revenue, profit estimates, shares rise

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Figurines are seen in front of the Facebook logo in this illustration© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Figurines are seen in front of the Facebook logo in this illustration

(Reuters) – Facebook Inc (O:) beat analysts’ estimates for quarterly revenue and profit on Wednesday, driven by a steady rise in advertising.

Shares of the company, which owns WhatsApp and Instagram, were up about 3% at $194 in extended trading.

The world’s largest social network has faced scrutiny over the past three years from regulators and users worldwide over its privacy practices and data breaches. It is also feeling the heat from politicians on how its services have been used to spread misinformation about politics and health.

Despite the challenges, the company’s core business continues to perform well.

Ad sales jumped about 28% to $17.38 billion in the third quarter, above analysts’ average estimate of $17.09 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Costs surged about 32% to $10.47 billion.

Facebook, which has agreed to pay $5 billion to settle a U.S. Federal Trade Commission data privacy probe, has warned that new rules and product changes to protect users’ privacy would slow its revenue growth into next year and significantly raise expenses.

Monthly active users rose to 2.45 billion, in line with estimates, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Net income rose to $6.09 billion, or $2.12 per share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, from $5.14 billion, or $1.76 per share, a year earlier.

Analysts had expected a profit of $1.91 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. Total revenue rose about 28% to $17.65 billion, beating analysts’ average estimate of $17.37 billion.

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