Twitter Q3 revenue crushes expectations, user count misses, shares plunge

The social networker once again saw its daily number of active users surge, though not as much as the Street had been expecting.

Twitter this afternoon reported third-quarter revenue and profit that easily surpassed analysts' expectations, but came up short in its number of daily users.

Twitter shares declined by about 11% in late trading

Said Twitter, "Advertisers significantly increased their investment on Twitter in Q3, engaging our larger audience around the return of events and increased product launches."

Revenue in the three months ended in September rose to $936 million, yielding EPS of 19 cents. 

The Street had been modeling $777 million and 6 cents per share. 

The company said that its mDAUs, the number of monetizable daily users of its service, on average, rose  29%, year over year, to 187 million.

That compares to an increase of 34% in the prior quarter. The Street had been modeling 195.6 million mDAUs.

Twitter said events such as the U.S. presidential election campaigns drove engagement, as well as product changes:

The year-over-year increase in mDAU was primarily driven by external factors, including increased global conversation around COVID-19, the run- up to US elections, and other current events. Our work to serve the public conversation, to help people find trusted sources of information, and to better organize and surface the many topics and interests that bring people to Twitter, helped us retain new and recently reactivated accounts in Q3. We also continue to benefit from the ongoing impact of product improvements, including continued increases in relevance across notifications, search, Explore, and the Home timeline.

Tonight's report comes amidst something of a resurgence in online advertising, as indicated by Pinterest last night, and Snap two weeks ago

Facebook, which faced an ad boycott by some large ad buyers the quarter, nevertheless also saw strong results this evening.