Amazon Tops Q3 Estimates, Offers Strong Q4 Guidance

Amazon expects holiday quarter revenue to jump between 28% and 38% year over year in the fourth quarter.
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Shares of Amazon  (AMZN) - Get Report dropped after hours Thursday even after the company reported third-quarter earnings and revenue that easily topped analyst estimates for the period. 

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Amazon reported earnings of $12.37 per share on revenue of $96.15 billion. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of $7.41 per share on revenue of $92.7 billion. 

"We’re seeing more customers than ever shopping early for their holiday gifts, which is just one of the signs that this is going to be an unprecedented holiday season. Big thank you to our employees and selling partners around the world who’ve been busy getting ready to deliver for customers this holiday," CEO Jeff Bezos said. 

For the holiday quarter, the company expects net sales to be between $120 billion and $121 billion, growth representing between 28% and 38$ year over year. Analysts are expecting revenue of $112.32 billion for the quarter. 

Operating income for the period is expected to range between $1 billion and $4.5 billion, compared with $3.9 billion a year ago. That estimate assumes about $4 billion of costs related to COVID-19. 

The company also announced that AWS, its cloud services arm, saw revenue climb 29% with subscriptions rising 33%. 

Despite the strong numbers, Amazon shares were down 1.6% after hours Thursday, giving back most of their gains from the regular session. 

Earlier this week, the company announced that that it would hire 100,000 seasonal workers ahead of the holidays across the U.S. and Canada.

The Seattle tech and online-retail giant said that the top five states with seasonal job opportunities are California, Texas, New Jersey, Maryland and Georgia. 

Amazon shares closed trading up 1.5% Thursday.