Social Media

Facebook earnings: Wall Street expects growth to show no sign of slowing

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Wall Street is expecting Facebook to show strong growth when it posts Q4 earnings on Wednesday afternoon, thanks to continued high demand from advertisers.

The company is projected to show revenue of $8.51 billion, up 46 percent year over year, according to a Thompson Reuters consensus estimate. Earnings per share are expected to hit $1.31.

"Our checks with marketers and agencies also suggest continued strong demand and no significant change in trajectory," JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth wrote in a note to clients. "Facebook remains our top large-cap pick."

During Facebook's earnings call in July, Chief Financial Officer Dave Wehner said the company would be slowing down its rate of adding advertisements after mid-2017. But the company shows no sign of stopping on that front despite concerns over ad load — the tipping point where too many ads begin to drive users away.

For example, the company is developing a video-based app for television sets that will allow it to increase video advertising, according to The Wall Street Journal. Facebook also announced plans to invest in original and licensed video and to add ads in between its livestreamed content. The company added new advertising options on Instagram, especially on its Snapchat-like product.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Mahaney said investors should take a closer look at user growth and engagement. He is expecting users to grow 16 percent to 1.81 billion, with engagement staying steady.