Google's Q4 Earnings Report Comes Up Short On Bottom Line

Google's fourth quarter earnings report gave investors much to be pleased about; however, its bottom line still fell short of expectations.

Google's Q4 Earnings Report Comes Up Short On Bottom Line
The New York Times / Jeffrey Marlow

Google has announced its fourth quarter earnings report, and while the results gave investors much to be pleased about, its bottom line still fell short of Wall Street expectations. 

Though its sales rose 17 percent over the last three months, the search giant only posted adjusted earnings of $12.01 per share on revenue of $16.86 billion. Short of analysts' forecast of around $12.20 a share on $16.75 billion in revenue. (Via Al Jazeera, NY1

A 31 percent year-over-year jump in paid clicks on advertisements accounted for some of that sales boost. 

However, the average cost-per-click marketers gave was down 11 percent for Google. That's representative of a shift in use from home computers to smartphones and tablets — ad rates for mobile devices are much cheaper. (Via Bloomberg)

"Core" revenues for Google totaled nearly $16 billion in the fourth quarter. But, the Motorola division of the company posted yet another operating loss — nearly $4 million according to the latest report. 

Los Angeles Times reports just Wednesday evening Google announced plans to sell Motorola's smartphone business to Lenovo for $2.9 billion. The deal will rid Google of a financial headache that has cost them nearly $2 billion. 

An analyst for CNBC says the divestment will likely spur investors to give Google a pass on their fourth quarter shortcomings. 

"Expectations were pretty high, so I'm not overly surprised they missed on the bottom line. But I do think investors will give them a pass given that the more important news is that they're getting out of the handset business."

Google's other major announcement this week is that it's finally approved a plan to split its stock and begin offering Class C shares to investors. The split is scheduled to happen on April 2.