Facebook Revenue Beats, but Earnings Miss

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Facebook posted revenue that surpassed Wall Street forecasts on Wednesday, as the company's mobile ad revenues continued to rise. After an initial pop, Facebook shares are slightly higher in extended hours trading.

The social media giant posted net income of $219 million, or 9 cents per share, up from $205 million, or 9 cents per share a year earlier.

Earnings excluding items were $312 million, or 12 cents a share, compared with $287 million, or 12 cents per share in the first quarter of 2012. That missed Wall Street estimates by a penny, according to estimates from Thomson Reuters.

Revenue rose 38 percent to $1.46 billion from the $1.06 billion booked in the year-earlier quarter, beating forecasts for $1.44 billion.

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The company also said that its quarterly revenue from advertising totaled $1.25 billion, up 43 percent from a year ago. Mobile advertising revenue represented about 30 percent of advertising revenue in the quarter, up from 23 percent of ad revenue in the fourth quarter.

"Having billions of people checking multiple times a day is a huge opportunity for us. the opportunity for us to connect people to marketers has never been greater," COO Sheryl Sandberg said on the conference call.

Non-GAAP expenses rose 56 percent in the quarter to $895 million. It's non-GAAP operating margin also shrank to 39 percent from 46 percent.

Facebook CFO David Ebersman warned on the call that expenses are going to rise as it continues to invest in products, infrastructure and engineers.

Daily and monthly active users were also up during the quarter. Daily active users were 665 million on average for March 2013, an increase of 26 percent from a year earlier. Monthly active users were 1.11 billion as of March 31, 2013, an increase of 23 percent.