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Uber Eats Boosts Financials at Ride-Hailing Company

Uber's loss narrows as food-delivery business surges during fourth quarter.
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Uber Technologies  (UBER)  after the bell on Wednesday reported a narrower fourth-quarter loss, helped by a strong showing in its food-delivery business.

Uber said its delivery business bookings more than doubled (up 130%) to $10.05 billion, largely offsetting a decline of 50% in its ride-hailing business compared with the year-earlier period.

Uber said its net loss per share attributable to holders was 54 cents vs. 64 cents a year earlier. Analysts had been expecting a loss of 53 cents a share, based on a FactSet survey. 

Revenue for the quarter came in at $3.17 billion vs. $3.75 billion a year earlier. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had been looking for about $3.4 billion.

"Uber came close enough to its expected numbers that the stock won't move much," Forrester analyst James McQuivey said in emailed comments after the report.  

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"Most investors will continue to hold Uber, expecting that as the ride-hailing segment recovers in step with the receding pandemic, things will be okay in the future," he added.

Shares of Uber fell 3.5% to $60.96 at last check. During the regular session, Uber gained 6% in the wake of strong results Tuesday from rival ride-hailing company Lyft  (LYFT)

Both Uber and Lyft have been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic and related economic shutdowns. But the companies, and markets, appear optimistic that the rollout of vaccines in the U.S. and elsewhere will lead to a broader economic rebound as the year progresses. 

Uber stock has risen 41% since the company last reported earnings on Nov. 5. 

"While 2020 certainly tested our resilience, it also dramatically accelerated our capabilities in local commerce, with our delivery business more than doubling over the year to a nearly $44 billion annual bookings run-rate in December," Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement.