Twitter shares plunge after company records $167m loss for 2016’s final quarter

File photo of the Twitter icon displayed on a laptop. Photo credit should read: Martin Keene/PA Wire

File photo of the Twitter icon displayed on a laptop. Photo credit should read: Martin Keene/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Twitter has warned its advertising sales are suffering amid stiff competition after recording a $167m (£133m) loss for the final three months of 2016.

Despite its daily user figures rising 4% to 319m in the quarter, the social media site's revenue of $717m (£571m) was 3.2% below its forecasted target.

Twitter said it expected advertising revenue to lag behind audience grow through 2017 due to 'escalating competition' for ad sales.

Although its fourth quarter loss nearly doubled from $90m a year earlier, on an annual basis the number dropped from $521m (£415m) to $456.8m (363.8m) for 2016.

It is now anticipating adjusted earnings of $75m-$95m (£59m-£76m) for the first quarter of 2017 – less than half the adjusted earnings reported for the previous quarter.


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The news sent its New York-listed shares plummeting more than 10.5% in pre-market trading.

Rather than the gloomy economic picture, chief executive Jack Dorsey focused on the company's 4% increase in audience numbers during the quarter.

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He said: 'We overcame the toughest challenge for any consumer service at scale by reversing declining audience trends and re-accelerating usage.'

He added: 'While revenue growth continues to lag audience growth, we are applying the same focused approach that drove audience growth to our revenue product portfolio, focusing on our strengths and the real-time nature of our service.

'This will take time, but we're moving fast to show results.'

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