Facebook beats modest expectations, $1.26B in revenue and $0.12 per share

Facebook beat analysts’ lowered expectations for its third-quarter earnings Tuesday, reporting $1.26 billion in revenue, up 32 percent over the year before, and earnings of $0.12 a share excluding one-time charges. Analysts had been projecting earnings of $0.11 per share and $1.23 billion in revenue.

On a GAAP basis, Facebook posted a $59 million loss or a diluted loss of $0.02 per share. In the same quarter last year, when Facebook was a private company, it recorded net income on a GAAP basis of $227 million and revenue of $954 million. On a non-GAAP basis, Facebook reported net income of $311 million in Q3 2012, however, compared to $273 million in the same quarter last year. The non-GAAP figures exclude some one-time expenses, and analysts generally use those numbers to evaluate the performance of a company.

Facebook met analysts expectations last quarter when it reported $1.18 billion in revenue, a 32 percent increase over the same period last year and non-GAAP earnings of $295 million, or $0.12 per share. Facebook last quarter posted a GAAP net loss of $157 million, due to one-time stock-expense charges related to its IPO.

Facebook said advertising revenue brought in $1.09 billion or 86 percent of total. In the previous quarter, Facebook generated $992 million in advertising revenue, representing 84 of total revenue.

Other highlights:

  • Monthly active users hit 1.01 billion in the third quarter, up 26 percent year-over-year while daily active users reache 584 million, a 28 percent increase over the same period last year. Mobile monthly active users were 604 million, a 61 percent increase from last year.
  • Facebook generated 14 perent of its advertising revenue in the quarter from mobile.
  • Facebook’s GAAP operating margin fell from 43 percent last year in the third quarter to 30 percent for the third quarter of 2012.

Facebook has been closely watched for its progress on mobile, which is how users are increasingly engaging with the social network. The fact that mobile represents 14 percent of ad revenue means Facebook generated $153 million from mobile ads. That makes it the second largest mobile ad business. But with 604 million users coming to Facebook on mobile each month, that number needs to go up.