eBay Easily Tops Wall Street's Profit View

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Shares of eBay ( EBAY) jumped in late trades on Wednesday after the online auctioneer beat Wall Street's earnings expectations by a healthy margin.

The San Jose, Calif.-based company reported non-GAAP earnings of $725 million, or 55 cents a share, in the quarter on revenue of $3.28 billion, up 29% from last year's total. The average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters was for a profit of 52 cents a share in the March-ended quarter on revenue of $3.15 billion.

For the second quarter ending in June, eBay expects non-GAAP earnings of 53 to 55 cents a share on revenue ranging from $3.25 billion to $3.35 billion. Wall Street's current consensus estimate is for a profit of 54 cents a share on revenue of $3.36 billion. The company sees non-GAAP earnings of $2.30 to $2.35 a share on revenue of $13.8 billion to $14.1 billion vs. the average analysts' view of $2.30 a share on revenue of $13.85 billion.

The stock was last quoted at $37.50, up 4.5%, on volume of 1.1 million, according to Nasdaq.com. Based on Wednesday's regular-session close at $35.87, the share are up 18% so far in 2012.

"The first quarter was a strong start to the year for us with momentum continuing in our Marketplaces, PayPal and GSI Commerce businesses," said John Donahoe, the company's president and CEO, in a statement. "We believe that innovation in retail today is technology driven, and consumers are embracing smarter, easier, better ways to shop. We are enabling commerce in this new retail environment, supporting and partnering with sellers of all sizes and giving consumers worldwide the ability to shop anytime, anywhere, for whatever they want."

eBay highlighted the progress of its PayPal business, saying it ended the quarter with 109.8 million registered accounts, up 12% from last year, and that revenue from the unit jumped 32% because of "increased penetration on eBay as well as continued merchant and consumer adoption."

Its Marketplaces business reported gross merchandise volume of $16 billion, excluding vehicle sales, in the first quarter, also a year-over-year increase of 12%.

-- Written by Michael Baron in New York.

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