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Why The Trade Desk Inc. Stock Popped 36% Today

Steve Symington, The Motley Fool

What happened

Shares of The Trade Desk (NASDAQ: TTD) were up 36.4% as of 3:30 p.m. EDT on Friday after the programmatic advertising specialist announced second-quarter 2018 results that were significantly stronger than expected. 

More specifically, The Trade Desk's revenue soared 54% year over year to $112.3 million, which translated to adjusted earnings of $27.2 million, or $0.60 per share. By comparison, the company's guidance in May called for sales of only $103 million, and most people watching the stock were anticipating far lower earnings of $0.44 per share. 

Stock market charts indicating steep gains

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Founder and CEO Jeff Green said: "There is strong momentum to diversify the way advertisers spend on digital. We continued to see marketers spend disproportionately more with The Trade Desk as they look beyond the few search and social sites that historically captured the most advertising dollars."

To be sure, The Trade Desk enjoyed broad-based growth across multiple channels. Mobile sales jumped 89% year over year, connected-TV spending more than doubled, and audio channel sales almost tripled. The company also maintained customer retention rates of over 95% for the 18th straight quarter.

Now what

If that weren't enough, The Trade Desk expects third-quarter revenue of $116 million, well above the $109 million most analysts were modeling. And the company increased its full-year 2018 outlook to call for revenue of at least $456 million (up from $433 million previously), and for adjusted EBITDA of $140 million (up from $133 million).

In the end, this was another straightforward beat-and-raise scenario for The Trade Desk. Given the extent of that beat -- with earnings outpacing consensus estimates by nearly 40% -- it's hardly surprising to see the stock responding in kind.

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Steve Symington has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends The Trade Desk. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.