There are federal antitrust charges against Alphabet Inc.’s Google; Increasing Scrutiny of Amazon.com Inc and Apple Inc; and user and advertiser boycotts of Facebook Inc. It is all in the middle of a pandemic: government regulators and the news media.
On Thursday, Big Tech reported earnings en masse. Thus, it appeared all those effects felt by those companies were positive. Alphabet, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon all reported record quarterly revenue. It was like that even during the regulatory scrutiny, the seemingly endless coronavirus pandemic, and a congressional tongue-lashing.
The combined revenue of the Big Four companies are worth about $5.3 trillion in total. It is roughly one-fifth of the S&P 500. Last quarter, that combined revenue came in at $220.28 billion, with double-digit revenue growth at all companies except Apple. Apple cold only produces the best September-quarter sales in its history while the others had their best quarterly revenue totals.
Profits of the Big Four totaled $38.08 billion. Thus, there was growth at all the companies except Apple. Apple saw a seven percent drop in net income because of the late rollout of the new iPhone. The overall performance is even better than in the last quarter. In the last quarter, tech titans reported a combined two hundred billion dollars revenue and a profit of nearly twenty-nine billion dollars. Thus, we can say that performance was better in the first full quarter of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Besides increasing revenue and profit, the only other significant difference was a mixed performance in after-hours trading. Three of the companies had forecast issues that sat wrong with investors: Amazon’s projection of outsize spending on COVID-19 issues, Facebook’s jittery outlook, and Apple’s lack of a forecast. Google does not provide forecasts. So, shares in all but google declined in late trading, after tremendous gains so far in 2020.
Alphabet’s Google search business saw a return to strength in Youtube and online ads. It is an argument in business that other social-media and internet companies have seen in the pandemic. It is because most people stay at home and connect through social media. Also, it is seen in the results of Snap Inc. and Pinterest Inc.
Later-than-usual launch of much-anticipated next generation of iPhones impacted Apple’s fiscal fourth-quarter results. So, it led to an approximately two billion dollars shortfall in anticipated iPhones sales. It is according to the consensus among analysts. Analysts were predicting for $28.08 billion in iPhone sales against the reported $26.44 billion. Shares of Apple were down 3.83% in after-hours trading.