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Lyft Inc. (LYFT) - Get Free Report shares traded higher Thursday after the ride-sharing group posted and narrower-than-expected second quarter loss, its first a public company, and boosted its full-year revenue forecast. 

Lyft said its loss for the three months ending in June was tabbed at 68 cents per share, notably lower than the $8.37 per share loss it booked last year and 32 cents inside the Street consensus forecast. Group revenues, as well, impressed analysts', rising 72% from the same period last year to a forecast-beating $867.3 million. 

Looking into 2019, Lyft said it sees full year revenues in the range of $3.47 billion to $3.5 billion, up from a previous forecast of $3.28 billion to $3.3 billion. The ride-hailing group also lowered its adjusted loss forecast for the year to between $850 million and $875 million, down from its prior estimate of $1.15 billion to $1.18 billion.

"We're excited about our strong performance this quarter, built on incredible effort across all of our teams," CEO Logan Green told investors on a conference call late Wednesday. "Our 72% revenue growth rate this quarter is exceptional at our scale. We are increasingly confident in the market outlook for U.S. ridesharing as the competitive environment continues to show signs of improvement."

"Our Lyft Business team is building partnerships with world-leading brands like Disney, leveraging our technology and expertise to deliver tailored solutions at scale," he added. "Finally, we're setting ourselves up for decades to come by solidifying our position as the platform of choice for self-driving technology companies."

Lyft shares were marked 4.6% higher Thursday to change hands at $63.06 each, a move that still leaves the stock some 12.4% south of its March 29 IPO price of $72 per share.

Lyft said revenue per rider rose 22% from last year to $39.77, while the number of overall customers surged 41% to nearly 22 million in its first quarterly report as a public company. It also noted that a previously scheduled "lockup" for investors participating in the IPO will be brought forward to August 19, instead of the originally slated September 24.

"A consistently rational competitive environment is keeping a lid on rider incentives, and in certain markets Lyft is proactively seeing the ability for higher prices with very little impact
on demand," said Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Graham. "Better than expected revenue growth of ~72% is resulting in improving operating leverage, and the company now expects its EBITDA loss to improve in 2019 vs 2018, brightening the mid-term profitability outlook."

"While the mechanical pull-forward of the IPO lockup expiration may induce some investor skepticism, there is little doubt that business trends are strong, and we view these Q2 results as a resounding endorsement of our positive stance on the stock and sector," he added.

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