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Facebook announced Wednesday that it blew past investor estimates in its fourth quarter earnings, jumping to $3.57 billion in profit, mostly due to mobile advertising growth. In total, advertising revenue grew 53%, and 84% of its total advertising revenue growth in Q4 came from mobile. In an interview with TechCrunch, Facebook's Chief Finance Officer David Wehner also said the tech giant added more users in Q4 than any in its history.

By the numbers, via CNBC:

  • $8.81 billion in revenue vs. $8.51 billion expected
  • $1.41 adjusted earnings per share vs. $1.31 adjusted per share expected
  • 1.23 billion Daily active users (DAUs) vs.1.19 billion expected
  • 1.86 billion Monthly active users (MAUs) vs. 1.83 billion expected

What a difference five years makes ....

  • Facebook's mobile ad revenue from Q4 2011: 0%
  • Facebook's mobile ad revenue from Q4 2016: 84%

For investors: Shares elevated to about three percent after the earnings call. Per Yahoo!, Facebook shares rose after seven of its previous 12 earnings announcements, and Facebook's adjusted earnings per share have now topped estimates for the last 13 quarters.

What matters: Heavy advertising growth, particularly on mobile, should help to relax investor concerns over major investments in virtual reality and augmented reality technologies, as well as big acquisitions like WhatsApp. But Facebook warned investors they should still continue to expect ad revenue to "come down meaningfully" in 2017, as the company works through ways to monetize video while newsfeed inventory continues to plateau. Earnings were announced shortly after Facebook lost a $500 million virtual reality headset case against ZeniMax Media Inc. for stolen technology. Mark Zuckerberg asked investors to be patient as the company continues to make large-scale investments in new technologies.

Go deeper

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

7 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.