AOL Inc. Earnings: Margins Shrink Again, Net Income Falls

AOL Inc. (NYSE:AOL) reported its results for the fourth quarter. AOL is a global web services company whose business consists of online content, products, and services that it offers to consumers, publishers, and advertisers.

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AOL Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for the internet information provider fell to $22.8 million (23 cents per share) vs. $66.2 million (61 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 65.6% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Fell 3.2% to $576.8 million from the year earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: AOL beat the mean analyst estimate of 17 cents per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $573.1 million.

Quoting Management: “AOL took a large step forward in Q4 and I am very pleased with the way we ended the year,” said Tim Armstrong, Chairman and CEO. “Our Q4 results highlight AOL’s ability to methodically improve our consumer offering and financial performance. We continue to invest in AOL and will continue to improve our operations during 2012.”

Key Stats:

The company beat estimates last quarter after being in line with expectations in the third quarter with a loss of 7 cents per share.

AOL’s profit in the latest quarter follows losses in the previous two quarters. The company reported a net loss of $2.6 million in the third quarter and a loss of $11.8 million in the second quarter.

Looking Forward: Analysts appear increasingly positive about the company’s results for the next quarter. The average estimate for the first quarter of the next fiscal year has moved up from a loss of 3 cents a share to a profit of 11 cents over the last ninety days. For the fiscal year, the average estimate has moved up from one cent a share to 6 cents over the last ninety days.

(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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