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GOOG Q3 Conference Call Next Week

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Google will hold its quarterly conference call on Thursday, October 19, to discuss how the company fared in Q3 2006.

After missing their estimates because of tax and foreign exchange surprises in Q4 2005, Google has had two straight blowout quarters. Analysts stand at the ready waiting for the third.

What will make this report especially interesting is Google’s acquisition of YouTube, announced Monday. No cash exchanged hands in the deal; it was a stock for stock transaction.

Wall Street celebrity analyst Jim Cramer predicted last Friday that GOOG shares would hit the $500 mark upon the YouTube acquisition. Shares are currently still under $430, but a rocket Q3 could be just the thing to boost them higher. But the stock is still well below its 52-week high of $475.11.

Yahoo Finance, which has an excellent streaming real time price update, puts the one year target estimate at $499.65.

Google’s earnings conference call will take place via live webcast at 1:30 pm Pacific Time (4:30 Eastern), accessible via webcast. The webcast version of the conference call will be available through the same link following the conference call.

Google’s acquisition of YouTube has already spurred discussion of possible anti-trust concerns. With Google arguably controlling 60 percent of the search market, combining YouTube with Google Video will give the company a strong foothold in another chunk of the Internet market.

Combine all of that with Google’s other successful online properties, like Google Base, Google Documents, Blogspot, Google Earth, et cetera, and you’ve got a larger Internet powerhouse than before. Google runs MySpace and AOL search services, and if the company were to acquire a hot social networking site like Facebook, the amount controlled traffic would go through the roof.

Former Harvard Business Review executive editor Nicholas Carr harkens back to past actions taken by the US government against IBM and Microsoft, and predicts similar outcomes for Google:

Google’s corporate pronouncements are carefully, and, by all accounts, sincerely, aimed at countering fears that it is building a competition- and innovation-squelching empire. But its actions often belie its rhetoric. Its founders said they had no interest in launching an internet portal, but then they launched an internet portal.

They said they wanted customers to leap off Google’s property as quickly as possible, but then they began cranking out more and more applications and sites aimed at keeping customers on Google’s property as long as possible. The company’s heart may be in the right place, but its economic interests lie elsewhere. And public companies aren’t known for being led by their hearts.

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