Yahoo! posts loss but beats forecasts

Yahoo%21Yahoo! profits have plunged into the red during its fourth quarter due to a downturn in advertising, as well as costs associated with write-offs and reducing staff numbers. It is the first set of results to be released under new chief executive Carol Bartz.

The internet company posted a net loss of $303m (£214m) in the three months to December 31 compared to a profit of $206m (£146m) in the same period a year earlier.

The results included one-time charges of more than $500m (£353m) to write down international assets and reduce its headcount, among other things. This included the departure of former chief executive Jerry Yang last month, who was replaced by Bartz earlier this month.

Restructuring charges totalled $83m (£59m), while international results included a goodwill impairment charge of $488m (£344m).

Yahoo!’s net revenue fell 2% to $1.38bn (974m), only just better than the $1.37bn (£968m) expected by Wall Street analysts.

Yahoo! says it expects revenue to be between $1.53bn (£1.08bn) and $1.73bn (£1.22bn) for the first quarter. Income from operations is expected to be between $75m (£53m) and $85m (£60m).

Bartz says: “Despite the challenging economic environment, Yahoo! delivered adjusted operating cash flow above the midpoint of guidance for the fourth quarter. The company also made important investments while aggressively managing costs, leaving us better positioned to weather the economic downturn and emerge stronger when advertiser spending improves.”

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