Twitter on Tuesday announced strong quarterly growth in earnings and users, while President Donald Trump was tweeting criticism of the social media site for allegedly discriminating against him politically.
The company said net revenue for the first three months of the year increased due to strong advertising demand. Daily users increased 11 percent to 134 million in the first quarter of 2019, thanks to “organic growth as well as continuous product and merchandising improvements.”
The San Francisco company began disclosing its daily user base in the prior quarter. These are users who log into the site at least once a day and see advertisements on the platform. Twitter says the daily metric will replace its monthly user count, which it will stop reporting.
Shortly after the numbers were released, Trump took to Twitter to test the social media company’s treatment of him, accusing him of playing “political games.”
“They don’t treat me well as a Republican. Very discriminatory,” he said, calling for “more and fairer companies,” in an apparent reference to the interest of US lawmakers in regulating technology companies. Trump, without evidence, has often criticized social media sites for being biased against Republicans. Twitter, along with Facebook and Google, has denied the existence of any political bias.
“The best thing that can happen to Twitter is Donald Trump.” @MariaBartiromo It’s true, but they don’t treat me well as a Republican. Very discriminatory, difficult for people to sign. Constantly taking people off the list. Big complaints from many people. Different names over 100 M… ..
– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 23, 2019
The earnings report also included details of an experimental application the company has been developing to make the social media site more “conversational.”
The biggest change to the app is that it allows users to view an entire Twitter thread rather than having to access each individual post.
“People love this,” CEO Jack Dorsey said on an earnings call. “They love this more than the production Twitter app.”
Twitter executives said a small group of people started testing the app a month ago, but did not reveal when it would launch.
The company posted a profit of $ 190.8 million, or 25 cents a share, for the first quarter. After adjusting for one-time earnings and costs, earnings increased 10 percent to $ 66.4 million, or 9 cents a share. Analysts polled by Zacks Investment Research forecast earnings of 15 cents a share.
Revenues for the period reached $ 786.9 million, beating analysts’ forecasts of $ 774.9 million.
Twitter said advertising demand in the first quarter grew strongly, led by the United States, where advertising revenue increased in one quarter.
Operating expenses increased 18 percent to $ 693 million. Twitter said its work to reduce harassment on its service has paid off, with about 38% of the abusive tweets removed each week being detected by its algorithms before they are reported by humans.
For the current quarter ending in July, Twitter said it expects revenue in the range of $ 770 million to $ 830 million. Analysts surveyed by Zacks expect revenue of $ 821 million.
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