NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Google (GOOG) was grabbing headlines after Thursday's closing bell as the Internet search giant reported a much stronger than anticipated profit for its fourth quarter and announced a shake-up in the C-suite.
The company posted an adjusted profit of $2.85 billion, or $8.75 per share, for the three months ended Dec. 31, ahead of Wall Street's consensus view of $8.07 a share. Revenue came in at $6.37 billion for the December quarter, beating the average analysts' estimate of $6.05 billion.
The bigger news, however, may be that Larry Page is taking over the CEO post. Page will move into the role in April, replacing Eric Schmidt, who will assume the executive chairman role.
Google said paid clicks -- the number of times that users clicked on advertising to generate revenue for the company -- increased 18% year-over-year and 11% over the third quarter.The stock was last quoted at $638.75, up 2%, on volume of 1.65 million, according to Nasdaq.com. The shares have appreciated roughly 9% in the past 52 weeks, and hit a 52-week high of $642.96 on Wednesday.
Jones GroupShares of Jones Group (JNY) slumped in late trades after the New York City-based maker of fashion apparel and accessories gave a disappointing profit outlook for the fourth quarter, saying the retail environment was "more promotional than anticipated, particularly in footwear," which hurt its gross margins. The stock was last quoted at $13.35, down 3%, on volume of roughly 23,000. Shares finished the regular session at $13.78, bouncing slightly after plumbing a new 52-week low of $13.54 on Thursday. In the past 52 weeks, the stock is down more than 17% with much of that move coming since the start of 2011 as it's lost more than 12% year-to-date. The company said it now sees adjusted earnings of 2 cents a share for its fiscal fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, well below the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters for a profit of 11 cents a share in the three-month period. Jones Group also cited rising costs and a soft market for excess inventory as culprits in its below-consensus performance, and took a cautious view of 2011. "The performance of our brands has been consistently strong, even in a challenging environment, and for 2011, we believe that our brands are positioned to achieve net revenue growth in mid-single digits," said Wesley Card, the company's CEO, in a statement. "That said, the strength in consumer spending and acceptance of price increases in 2011 remain uncertain."
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