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Amazon Misses Big in Q3

Jim Giaquinto

You can add the world’s largest online retailer to the long list of disappointing results for this earnings season. A few moments ago, Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) reported a third-quarter loss per share and net sales that fell short of expectations.

Its guidance for the fourth quarter was nothing to write home about either.

The company lost 23 cents per share in the quarter, while the Zacks Consensus Estimate was expecting a loss of only 8 cents. This was its second consecutive quarterly loss. (This excludes a loss of 37 cents related to its involvement with LivingSocial. When included, the loss is 60 cents per share.) AMZN earned 14 cents in the year-ago quarter.

Net sales increased 27% to $13.81 billion, but that was slightly below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $13.9 billion.

For the fourth quarter, AMZN expects net sales between $20.25 billion and $22.75 billion. The Zacks Consensus Estimate is at $22.8 billion.

At the time of its report, Amazon was a Zacks #2 Rank (Buy) with a few upward revisions from analysts in the past 30 days. That’s likely to take a turn for the worse in the coming days.

The company has been investing heavily in improving its footprint around the world and finding new opportunities, hence its increase in the number of fulfillment centers. We respect its willingness to take on short-term challenges for long-term gains, but in the meantime we have a “Neutral” recommendation for the company.

We’ll have a lot more specifics on the company’s quarter coming soon…

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