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Bad Show at Baidu

The stock tumbles after earnings fall sequentially.

Updated from 4:30 p.m.


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posted a third-quarter profit, but its shares plummeted 17% in late action Wednesday.

The Beijing-based Internet search outfit made $1.1 million, or 3 cents a share. That's down 29% sequentially but nearly triple the year-ago level. Revenue rose 28% sequentially and 174% from a year ago to $11 million.

"We are very pleased that Baidu continued its growth momentum during the third quarter with robust traffic expansion and strong revenue growth," said CEO Robin Li. "Our focus on providing the best search experience to Chinese users, the stronger-than-expected branding effect of our successful IPO, and the progress that we made in refining our P4P platform contributed to our solid top-line growth for the quarter."

Bandwidth cost rose 66% from the previous quarter and 334% from the corresponding period in 2004, relating mostly to data center expansion.

The company forecast fourth-quarter revenue of $12.8 million, up some 220% from a year ago.

Baidu also named William Decker chairman of its audit committee and said directors Jixun Foo and Scott Walchek quit. The company said three of its five directors are now independent. went public with a bang on Aug. 5. The stock has spent its public life above $70 after pricing at $27. It rocketed as high as $153.98 on Aug. 6, riding two speculative themes: the growing interest among investors in Chinese Internet companies and the rapid growth in search-related advertising, led in the U.S. by


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Late Wednesday, Baidu slipped $14.05 to $67.