Facebook profit soars as it shakes off data scandal

Facebook's profits soared in the first three months of the year, as analysts await whether it has suffered user or advertiser damage over its failure to safeguard personal data.
The Menlo Park, California-based social network said net income rose 63% to $4.99bn (€3.57bn) in the first three months of 2018. In the same period a year earlier, it posted a profit of $3.06bn.
Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive of Facebook, said: "Despite facing important challenges, our community and business is off to a strong start in 2018.""We are taking a broader view of our responsibility and investing to make sure our services are used for good."But we also need to keep building new tools to help people connect, strengthen our communities, and bring the world closer together."Facebook has seen its stock tumble about 9% since the start of the year amid a scandal over the misuse of personal data by political consultancy Cambridge Analytica.It has also been accused of doing nothing to stop the spread of so-called fake news and misinformation during elections.On a conference call with investors, Mr. Zuckerberg said the company would roll out new tools ahead of elections in Brazil and Mexico.
Zuckerberg is announcing a set of transparency measures for elections, to be ready in time for elections in the U.S., Mexico, Brazil, and elsewhere. Talking about #MeToo, Hurricane Harvey, and 80 million small biz who use the platform to create jobs. #FacebookQ1— Matt Stoller (@matthewstoller) April 25, 2018
Despite a #deleteFacebook campaign and Mr. Zuckerberg's appearance before congressional committees, daily active users rose 13% to 2.2 billion in the first quarter.
Monthly active users rose 13% to 2.2 billion in the first quarter.Revenue soared 49% to $11.97bn, beating analysts' expectations.Advertising revenue rose 50% to $11.7bn, with 91% generated by mobile advertising. Facebook and Alphabet's Google dominate the global internet advertising market and there appears to be little impact from the scandal.Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg reiterated that a handful of advertisers had paused their spending but the company hadn't witnessed a major trend.The company also said it would buy back an additional $9bn in stock.
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In after-hours trading, Facebook's stock rose 4.9% to $167.53."Everybody keeps talking about how bad things are for Facebook, but this earnings report to me is very positive, and reiterates that Facebook is fine, and they'll get through this," Daniel Morgan, senior portfolio manager at Synovus Trust Company, told Reuters. His firm holds about 73,000 shares in Facebook.
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