Facebook Q3 revenue, earnings crush expectations as user count tops expectations

The social networker benefitted from better-than-expected gains in users during the quarter.

Facebook this afternoon reported third-quarter revenue and profit that easily topped analysts' expectations, and also reported user counts that beat expectations. 

The company also forecast revenue to rise faster this quarter than last, a view in line with Wall Street's expectations.. 

The shares declined slightly in late trading despite the beat. 

Revenue in the three months ended in September rose to $21.47 billion, yielding EPS of $2.71.

Analysts had been modeling $19.8 billion and $1.90.

Daily average users rose to 1.82 billion, while monthly average users rose to 2.74 billion. That compares to increases of 12% for each of DAUs and MAUs in the prior quarter. 

The Street had been modeling 1.793 billion and 2.705 billion, respectively.

Facebook it expects this quarter's ad revenue growth rate "to be higher than our reported third quarter 2020 rate, driven by continued strong advertiser demand during the holiday season." Analysts have been modeling Q4 revenue growth of 23%. Hence, the statement could be taken as being in-line with consensus.

Tonight's report comes amidst something of a resurgence in online advertising, as indicated by Pinterest last night, and Snap two weeks ago. However, Facebook had been the target of some boycotts by advertisers last quarter, which drove some ad revenue to Pinterest and other venues.

Twitter also reported strong results this afternoon, although its own user count additions came up short of Wall Street's expectations.