Posted July 16, 2010 7:34 am by with 2 comments

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It seems that every time we report on Google’s quarterly performance it’s about disappointment in the investment community over numbers that most companies would kill for even in good times. It’s an interesting exercise that never ceases to amaze.

Google, who offers no guidance to the investment community, had a good second quarter as net revenue rose by 25%. No, that is not a typo but that was also not enough to stop the stock from slipping 4% in after hours trading. Here are the numbers as reported by the New York Times

In a sign of their impatience, Google’s stock price has sunk 17 percent over the last three months. It fell about 4 percent, to $474, in after-hours trading on Thursday after its announcement that both revenue and net income rose 24 percent in the second quarter, which ended June 30.

The company said its net income rose to $1.84 billion, or $5.71 a share, from $1.48 billion, or $4.66 a share. Excluding the cost of stock options and the related tax benefits, Google’s second-quarter profit was $6.45 a share.

Its revenue rose to $6.82 billion, from $5.52 billion in the year-ago quarter. Net revenue, which excludes commissions paid to advertising partners, was $5.09 billion, up from $4.07 billion a year ago. Google said that in the second quarter, paid clicks on Google sites and other sites that run Google ads grew 15 percent from the same period last year, and decreased 3 percent over the first quarter of 2010.

So despite increases the headlines read

Google Earnings Disappoint Investors – New York Times

Google’s Second Quarter Profit Misses Target, Shares Slip – LA Times Blog

Google’s Big Profit Jump Doesn’t Meet Expectations –

Google’s Profits Fail to Meet Expectations – Financial Times

Ads Buoy Google; Profit Disappoints – Wall Street Journal

It’s interesting to watch this happen this happen quarter after quarter because whenever ‘expectations’ are missed they are not something that Google has set themselves. Google doesn’t provide guidance to the investment community on what to expect moving forward. They never have and are smart in doing so.

Why? Because when everyone starts to cry about missed expectations it can be said that those expectations are based on speculation by the investment community (what isn’t when it comes to predicting the future about anything?). Sure the stock suffers but it has for the first half of the year as a whole.

I am the last person who says we need to be polly-annish about anything in business. In fact, I think it is better to error on the side of skepticism in most cases. What I don’t get is this need to knock down an important company when it is doing something (increased revenue and profits year over year) which everyone wants to do and needs to see that at least someone is doing it! Instead the investment industry and those reporting would rather take the “Let’s pee on their Corn Flakes” approach and continue the negativity that is today’s economy.

Personally, I liked the AdAge headline on this report which trumpeted

“Google Profits Surges As Marketers Return to Search”

They got the same information as everyone else and their headline told a truth about the report. In fact, it told the story that everyone needs these days. A story of hope coming from private industry in the free market. That’s desperately needed because it’s rooted in reality vs other hopeful messages from elsewhere that are only rooted in politics.

  • The investor community is a silly and crazy one, they are too often driven by feelings and fears rather than profits. :/

  • When earnings growth declines, investors aren’t happy.