Google's announced its financial results for the first quarter of 2010, and as usual, the search giant hit most of the targets analysts had established for it. Investors have not taken the news well, however, sending Google's stock down 4.51 so far percent in after-hours trading.
Let's start with the good news. Google reported net revenue of $5.06, which qualifies as significantly better than the $4.95 billion analysts expected. It topped EPS estimates, reporting $6.76 rather than $6.60, and paid clicks were up 15 percent compared to the same quarter last year.
Patrick Pichette, the company's CFO, also referred to "strength across all major verticals and geographies" and said in a statement, "Going forward, we remain committed to heavy investment in innovation - both to spur future growth in our core and emerging businesses as well as to help build the future of the open web."
Of course, Google didn't beat analysts' estimates by huge margins in the first quarter, and that may be part of what shareholders are unhappy about. For several years, the company sustained a tradition of shocking everyone with amazing numbers, and today's report wasn't consistent with that trend.
Specific complaints concern a four percent quarter-to-quarter decline in the average cost per click, too, along with the addition of 786 full-time employees.