Investors were looking at big profits in Chinese Internet stocks Wednesday after
reported a blowout third quarter after the bell.
The aggressively traded Web portal said first-quarter earnings rose 24% from a year ago to $14.5 million, or 27 cents a share, on a 65% revenue increase to $52.5 million. Excluding a charge, Sina earned $17.4 million, or 32 cents a share, in the most recent quarter, surpassing the Thomson First Call estimate of 28 cents a share.
For the fourth quarter, Sina pegged revenue at $54.5 million to $55.5 million, about $9 million above forecasts at the low end.
Sina's big first quarter came during a period of regulatory scrutiny in China, where officials have been cracking down on pornography and other sex-related advertising on the Internet. Despite the restraints, Sina's first-quarter advertising revenue rose 62% from a year ago to $18.5 million, and is expected to be at least that much in the fourth quarter. Other revenue, which comprises the company's messaging franchise, rose 66% from a year ago to $34 million.
In premarket Instinet trading, Sina shares were up $5.81, or 20%, to $34. Fellow portal
rose $4.15, or 10%, to $45.01, while strength was also expected in
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