A month has gone by since the last earnings report for Alphabet (GOOGL). Shares have added about 3.7% in that time frame, underperforming the S&P 500.
Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is Alphabet due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let’s take a quick look at the most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important drivers.
Alphabet Earnings Miss Q3 Estimates
Alphabet’s third-quarter 2022 earnings of $1.06 per share missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 15.2%. The figure declined 24.3% year over year.
Revenues of $69.1 billion increased 6% year over year (11% at constant currency).
Net revenues, excluding total traffic acquisition costs or TAC (TAC is the portion of revenues shared with Google’s partners and amounts paid to distribution partners and others, who direct traffic to the Google website), were $57.3 billion, which lagged the consensus mark of $58.4 billion. The figure rose 6.8% from the year-ago quarter’s level.
TAC of $11.8 billion was up 2.8% year over year.
Top-line growth was driven by the solid momentum in GOOGL’s cloud business. The strong performance of Other Bets contributed well.
However, Alphabet witnessed sluggishness in YouTube ads and Google Network due to slowdown in digital advertisement. This remained a major concern.
GOOGL plans to control expenses and go for slow hiring in fear of economic slowdown ahead.
Alphabet’s growing investments in AI, strong efforts to boost Search business and the expanding cloud services portfolio, which are expected to yield huge returns in the days ahead, remain major positives. This, in turn, is expected to instill investors’ optimism on the stock in the days ahead.
Segments in Detail
Alphabet reports revenues under Google Services, Google Cloud and Other Bets.
Revenues from the Google services business increased 2.5% year over year to $61.4 billion, accounting for 88.8% of the total revenues.
Under this business, search revenues from Google-owned sites increased 4.3% year over year to $39.5 billion.
YouTube’s advertising revenues declined 1.9% year over year to $7.1 billion, while Network advertising revenues decreased 1.6% to $7.9 billion.
Total Google advertising revenues grew 2.5% year over year to $54.5 billion and accounted for 78.9% of the total revenues.
Google’s Other revenues, consisting of Google Play and YouTube non-advertising revenues, were $6.9 billion for the third quarter, up 2.1% year over year.
Google Cloud revenues rose 37.6% year over year to $6.9 billion, accounting for 9.9% of the quarterly revenues.
Other Bets’ revenues were $209 million, up 14.8% year over year, accounting for 0.3% of the total third-quarter revenues.
EMEA (28.2% of total revenues): GOOGL generated $19.45 billion of revenues from the region, falling 2% year over year.
APAC (16.6% of total revenues): The region generated $11.5 billion of revenues, down 2% from the year-ago quarter’s level.
Other Americas (6% of total revenues): The region generated $4.14 billion of revenues, up 12% on a year-over-year basis.
United States (48.3% of total revenues): Alphabet generated $33.4 billion of revenues from the region, which increased 12% from the prior-year quarter’s level.
Costs and operating expenses were $51.96 billion, up 17.6% year over year. As a percentage of revenues, the figure expanded 750 basis points (bps) from the year-ago quarter’s level.
The operating margin was 25%, which contracted 700 bps year over year. Segment-wise, Google Services’ operating margin of 32.2% contracted 780 bps from the prior-year quarter’s level.
Google Cloud reported a loss of $699 million compared with a loss of $644 million in the year-ago quarter.
Other Bets reported a loss of $1.6 billion compared with a loss of $1.3 billion in the prior-year quarter.
As of Sep 30, 2022, cash and cash equivalents, and marketable securities were $116.3 billion, down from $124.9 billion as of Jun 30, 2022.
Long-term debt was $14.6 billion at the end of the reported quarter compared with $14.7 billion at the end of the previous quarter.
Alphabet generated $23.3 billion of cash from operations in third-quarter 2022 compared with $19.4 billion in second-quarter 2022.
GOOGL spent $7.3 billion on capex, netting a free cash flow of $16.1 billion in the reported quarter.
How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?
It turns out, fresh estimates have trended downward during the past month.
The consensus estimate has shifted -15.27% due to these changes.
Currently, Alphabet has a nice Growth Score of B, though it is lagging a lot on the Momentum Score front with an F. However, the stock was allocated a grade of C on the value side, putting it in the middle 20% for this investment strategy.
Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of B. If you aren’t focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.
Estimates have been broadly trending downward for the stock, and the magnitude of these revisions indicates a downward shift. It’s no surprise Alphabet has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). We expect a below average return from the stock in the next few months.
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