The search giant reported Tuesday revenue of $11.3 billion, excluding traffic acquisition costs (TAC) and earnings of $10.65 a share. Excluding TAC, Google brought in revenue of $14.42 billion, a 36% hike on the prior year's quarter.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were looking for revenue of $12.3 billion and earnings of $10.49 a share.
Cost-per-click, a key metric for the company's ad revenue, slipped 6% year-over-year, but climbed 2% sequentially, much to the delight of investors.Google shares rose 4.85% to $736.99 before market open. IBM (IBM - Get Report) was another gainer, rising more than 4% after the tech giant beat Wall Street's estimates in its own fourth-quarter results, released on Tuesday. Big Blue reported revenue of $29.3 billion, down from $29.5 billion in the same period last year, but above analysts' estimates of $29.09 billion. Excluding items, IBM earned $5.39 a share, up from $4.71 a share in the prior year's quarter. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were looking for earnings of $5.25 a share. The company's results were boosted by strength in its software business. Compared to the same period last year, IBM's software revenue increased 3% (or 4% adjusted for currency) to $7.9 billion. IBM shares climbed 4.24% to $204.4 in premarket trading. Research In Motion (RIMM) shares were also heading higher, rising 1.01% to $18.07, after closing up 13.01% during the most recent trading session. The company's shares surged on Tuesday after CEO Thorsten Heins told German newspaper Die Welt that he may license the BlackBerry OS to other manufacturers. Rumors continue to swirl around RIM's forthcoming BlackBerry 10 devices, which the company will unveil at an event on Jan. 30. Facebook (FB - Get Report) also continued its recent momentum, rising 1.08% to $31.06 after closing up 3.6% on Wednesday. Shares of Check Point Software (CHKP - Get Report) rose 0.35% to $48.14 as investors digested the security specialist's fourth-quarter results, released early on Wednesday. Check Point reported revenue of $368.6 million, a 3% increase on the prior year's quarter and earnings, excluding items, of 91 cents a share, an 8% year-over-year hike. While the company's earnings beat Wall Street's forecast of 88 cents a share, analysts surveyed by Yahoo! Finance were looking for sales of $373.74 million. Texas Instruments (TXN - Get Report) shares dipped 0.78% to $33.20 after the semiconductor specialist beat analysts' fourth-quarter estimates, but warned of weak demand. Apple (AAPL - Get Report) shares rose 0.17% to $505.65 in premarket trading after closing up 0.95% on Wednesday. The iPhone maker reports its fiscal first-quarter results after market close. TheStreet will be live-blogging Apple's earnings announcement, starting at 3:45 p.m. EST: --Written by James Rogers in New York. Follow @jamesjrogers >To submit a news tip, send an email to: email@example.com.