Recession over? Tech sector hits new peaks

Amazon capped off a shiny week for US tech giants last week with shares hitting a 52-week high as shares closed Friday at $107.04.

The stock’s peak, Amazon’s best since December 1999 when it reached $106.68, followed better than anticipated Q3 results featuring a 28% rise in revenue and a 69% surge in profit.
 
Banking on a Kindle kind of Christmas, Amazon Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos forecast Q4 revenues of €5.40 billion to €6.07 billion, exceeding market estimates of €5.4 billion.
 
“Kindle has become the number one bestselling item by both unit sales and dollars - not just in our electronics store but across all product categories on Amazon.com. It's also the most wished for and the most gifted. Earlier this week we began shipping the latest generation Kindle. Its 3G wireless works in the U.S. and 100 countries, and we've just lowered its price to $259,” he said.
 
Also on Friday Microsoft reported revenue of €8.59 billion for the first quarter ended September 2009, a 14% decline on the same corresponding in 2008.
 
While sales fell for the third consecutive quarter, they topped market expectations leading to shares in the company spiking more than 10% in pre-market stock trading.
 
“We are very pleased with our performance this quarter and particularly by the strong consumer demand for Windows. We also maintained our cost discipline, which allowed us to drive strong earnings performance despite continued tough overall economic conditions.” said CFO Chris Liddell.
 
Google also hit a 52-week high at $501.99 cracking another psychological rebound barrier on the back of impressive results in the face of the recession.

Last week the company reported 7% higher revenues of €3.95 billion, of which €2.06 billion came from outside the US. By comparison, Q2 sales were up just 3%.
 
The trend continued at Yahoo with a huge spike in quarterly profit. Net income rose 244% year-on-year to €123 million and operating income was up 30%, despite a 12% fall in revenue, Yahoo said
 
Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz defended her company’s lackluster performance against competitor Google, quipping, “Yahoo and Google are different companies. They are in different businesses….They aren’t us and we aren’t them.”

 

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