How Regulatory Fears May Weigh on Alphabet

April 24, 2018
Updated 2mo ago

Alphabet answered Wall Street's call and reported its best earnings since 2009.

Google's parent company earned $26 million in ad revenue in the first quarter, up from $21 million this time last year. It also revealed a $3 billion stake in the ride-hailing company Uber, in addition to other investments.

Alphabet was the first major tech company to report earnings since mounting concern over data privacy reached a peak after Facebook's Cambridge Analytica scandal.

In a call with investors on Monday, the Google CEO Sundar Pichai said that potential new privacy regulations won't impact the company because it requires "very limited information" from its users to be able to generate revenue from its ad business.

"There is a lot of sound and fury without much actually happening that's going to change the earnings power of these companies and the valuation" said Jason Ware, the chief investment officer and chief economist at Albion Financial Group.

But it's not all sunshine and rainbows for Alphabet. The stock was down more than 2 percent on Tuesday morning, signaling that investors may be cooling on their beloved FAANG stocks (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google).

Scott Kessler, the director of equity research and an analyst at CFRA, said investors should remember that Google has $100 billion in cash at its disposal. The company may give out buy-backs, or use it to make key investments, said Kessler.

Alphabet reported revenue of more than $31 billion and earnings per share of $13.33. Its "other bets" category saw revenue of $150 million.

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