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Amazon & Meta Making Big Market Moves, Apple Exceeds Earnings Expectations

Meta and Amazon shares were up more than 10% in extended trading following their earnings reports, while Apple saw a slight dip due to lower iPhone sales in China.

Big Tech earnings season continued on Thursday with updated financials from Amazon, Meta, and Apple.

Amazon came out on top with positive numbers across the board. Apple’s iPad and iPhone sales saw some declines, while the company beat overall earnings expectations. Meta’s shares were also up after the Big Tech giant reported better-than-expected financial results.

Let’s dive into some key takeaways from Amazon, Apple, and Meta’s recent earnings reports.

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Amazon

Amazon wrapped up the fourth quarter of 2023 stronger than expected, driving its stock up more than 8% in extended trading. The e-commerce giant beat analysts’ expectations and announced some new AI tech. Amazon generated $170 billion in revenue in Q4 of 2023, up 14% year-over-year, while net income came in at $10.6 billion. This positive earnings outlook is a big win for Amazon following the company’s mass layoff of 27,000 employees in the last year and a half. This quarter also encompasses the company’s success across Prime Video, including NFL Thursday Night Football games.

Ahead of its earnings call on Thursday, Amazon announced a new conversational AI shopping assistant called Rufus. The new tech offering harnesses generative AI to help users find and sift through products online. Shoppers can type or speak questions into the search bar of Amazon’s mobile app to activate Rufus. Amazon is beta testing the feature with select users with plans to roll Rufus out to all US customers in the coming weeks.

More insights from Amazon’s recent earnings report:

  • Amazon Web Services sales increased by 13% year-over-year to $24.2 billion.
  • Amazon’s advertising efforts generated $14.65 billion in revenue, up 27% year-over-year.
  • Customers purchased more than 1 billion products across Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
  • Amazon expects its first-quarter 2024 sales to land between $138 billion and $143.5 billion. This would be an 8% to 13% growth year-over-year.

Apple

Apple’s shares fell more than 4% in extended trading on Thursday after it reported that its iPhone sales dipped in China despite recently offering an iPhone 15 discount to compete with local smartphone makers. Still, the iPhone maker surpassed revenue and earnings estimates, generating $119.58 billion in revenue for the fiscal first quarter of 2024. Greater China was the only market in which Apple didn’t show sales growth for the quarter.

Apple finally broke its streak of annual revenue declines after seeing its numbers fall for four straight quarters. The company reported 2% growth across sales, with hopes that the uptick will stick through the next quarter. Unfortunately, iPad sales fell 25% during the quarter to $7.02 billion. This dip is likely due to the fact that Apple didn’t release a new iPad model in 2023 for the first time since the product launched in April 2010.

More insights from Apple’s recent earnings report:

  • Apple’s iPhone sector generated $69.70 billion in revenue, though iPhone sales in China declined by 13%.
  • Apple’s profitable services business, which includes Apple Music, Apple Pay, advertisements, warranties, licensing revenue, and other subscriptions, generated $23.11 billion in revenue for the quarter. This is up 11% year-over-year.
  • Apple reported that it has 2.2 billion active devices in use globally.
  • Mac revenue landed at $7.78 billion for the quarter, a less than 1% increase year-over-year.
  • Apple’s wearables unit, which includes the AirPods and the Apple Watch, generated $11.95 billion in sales, down 11% year-over-year.

Meta

Meta’s stock was up more than 14% in after-hours trading on Thursday after it shared a better-than-expected earnings report for Q4 of 2023. The Big Tech company surpassed analysts’ expectations across its earnings and revenue for the quarter. Revenue rose by 25% year-over-year to $40.1 billion, which is more than the $39.18 billion analysts projected. Meta drew in 3.98 billion monthly active users across its family of apps, up 6% year-over-year.

Meta generated $134.90 billion in revenue in 2023, up 16% compared to 2022. Meta founder and chief Mark Zuckerberg told investors that the company has made a lot of progress on its “vision for advancing AI and the metaverse,” while consumers remain eager to see that progress manifest in new offerings.

One of the biggest wins in Meta’s report is that its newest app, Instagram Threads, has attracted more than 130 million monthly active users. Zuckerberg even went as far as to say that Threads has the potential to reach 1 billion users in a few years if it keeps this growth rate up.

More insights from Meta’s recent earnings report:

  • Meta’s company expenses decreased by 8% year-over-year to $23.73 billion, while net income more than tripled to $14 billion.
  • The company’s virtual reality unit reported $4.65 billion in losses, but on the plus side, sales across its Reality Labs unit surpassed $1 billion in Q4.
  • Meta attributes a big portion of its recent success to China-based advertisers, who accounted for 10% of sales for the entire year.
  • Meta reported that its workforce was sitting at 67,317 at the end of Q4, down 22% year-over-year following multiple waves of mass layoffs.
  • Meta expects its sales for Q1 of 2024 to land in the range of $34.5 billion to $37 billion.

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About The Author
Michelai Graham
Michelai Graham
Michelai Graham is Boardroom's resident tech and crypto reporter. Before joining 35V, she was a freelance reporter with bylines in AfroTech, HubSpot, The Plug, and Lifewire, to name a few. At Boardroom, Michelai covers Web3, NFTs, crypto, tech, and gaming. Off the clock, you can find her producing her crime podcast, The Point of No Return.