Etsy stock surges on earnings beat and strong guidance

Key Points
  • Etsy crushed Wall Street's estimates for the fourth quarter after the bell on Thursday and provided upbeat guidance for the current quarter.
  • The company has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the pandemic-fueled surge in online shopping, adding 61 million new and reactivated buyers to its platform in the fourth quarter.
An employee walks past a quilt displaying Etsy signage at the company's headquarters in Brooklyn, New York.
Victor J. Blue | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Etsy reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results after the bell on Thursday, including soaring profits and 129% revenue growth.

The stock rose more than 8% in extended trading following the report.

Here's how the company did:

  • Earnings: $1.08 per share vs. 59 cents per share expected, according to analysts surveyed by Refinitiv
  • Revenue: $617.4 million vs. $516 million expected, according to analysts surveyed by Refinitiv

The e-commerce company said it expects revenue in the current quarter to be between $513 million and $536 million, way ahead of Wall Street's forecast revenue of $383 million. Etsy declined to give guidance for the full year of 2021, citing future macroeconomic conditions tied to the coronavirus pandemic.

Etsy, which operates an online marketplace known for handmade and personalized goods, has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the pandemic, as stuck-at-home shoppers turned to the company and other online retailers like Amazon and Walmart for both essential and non-essential items.

Face masks are one category that has thrived on Etsy during the pandemic. Masks made up 4% of total gross merchandise in the fourth quarter. That's a step down from 11% in the third quarter and 14% in the second quarter.

In the fourth quarter, Etsy said it attracted 61 million new or reactivated shoppers to its site and recorded nearly 160% growth in "habitual buyers."

It's unclear how sustainable the pandemic-fueled surge in demand will prove to be in the long term. In a statement, Etsy CEO Josh Silverman acknowledged that the growth will likely temper in 2021 compared to last year.

"While Etsy's growth in 2021 is likely to decelerate off of last year's high levels along with the rest of e-commerce, we have more conviction than ever to invest in our business for the long-term, building top of mind awareness in the hearts and minds of consumers, with an ambition to outperform e-commerce and gain market share," Silverman said in a statement.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated Wall Street's expectations for Q1 2021 revenue. The proper number is $383 million.

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