Amazon Q4 Revenue Hits $149 Billion, Topping Wall Street Forecasts, as Profit Falls

Amazon’s top-line growth in the last three months of 2022 was far better than investors expected, while its bottom line fell short.

The ecommerce kingpin’s fourth-quarter 2022 results handily beat Wall Street sales forecasts. Amazon reported revenue of $149.2 billion billion, up 9% year over year. Net income of $278 million (or 3 cents per share), compared with $14.3 billion a year earlier, was hurt by higher costs and a decline in the value of Amazon’s investment in electric-vehicle maker Rivian. Q4 is historically Amazon’s biggest quarter, encompassing the holiday-shopping season.

Amazon’s ad revenue increased 19% for the year-end quarter, hitting $11.6 billion in the period.

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy last month announced the layoff of 18,000 corporate employees, citing the need to cut costs amid the backdrop of an “uncertain and difficult” economic outlook. The headcount reduction, which includes layoffs Amazon made last fall, represents about 1.2% of the 1.54 million full- and part-time workers the company reported as of Sept. 30, 2022.

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Analyst consensus estimates were for $145.42 billion in revenue and earnings of 17 cents per share, according to Refinitiv data. The company’s decline in net income comes after Amazon posted a profit gain of nearly $12 billion from its investment in Rivian in the year-ago period.

For Q1, Amazon expects net sales to be between $121 billion and $126 billion, or to grow between 4% and 8% compared with the first quarter of 2022.

“In the short term, we face an uncertain economy, but we remain quite optimistic about the long-term opportunities for Amazon,” Jassy said in a statement. “When you also factor in our investments and innovation in several other broad customer experiences (e.g. streaming entertainment, customer-first healthcare, broadband satellite connectivity for more communities globally), there’s additional reason to feel optimistic about what the future holds.”

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