Facebook reports 17% rise in third-quarter profits amid growing criticism

Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg stated that the company’s performance would have been better if not for the impact of Apple’s iOS 14, which blocked ads from advertisers that were shown to users without their consent. 

Tech Giant Facebook Inc on Monday, October 25 reported third-quarter earnings of $9.19 billion or $3.22 a share, an increase from $2.71 a share it reported during the same quarter last year. The company experienced a rise in profits amid growing criticism that followed the revelations made by whistleblower Frances Haugen on the internal working of Facebook. 

However, Facebook’s performance in the last quarter fell short of expectations on the revenue front, which was forecast at $31.5 billion to $34 billion. The reason for the miss has been accounted to the allegations against Facebook for prioritising the company’s growth over public safety. 

Whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former product developer at Facebook, had made several accusations against the company and CEO Mark Zuckerberg last month, ranging from censoring government critics in Vietnam at the request of the country’s communist ruling party to withholding data about teenage users of its platform from shareholders. 

Nevertheless, the Monthly Active Users or MAUs, which is a crucial metric for Facebook’s growth globally, increased 6% to 2.91 billion, approximately in line with analyst expectations of 2.92 billion. 

Commenting on Facebook’s performance in the third quarter, Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg stated that the company’s performance would have been better if not for the impact of Apple’s iOS 14, which blocked ads from advertisers that were shown to users without their consent. 

“Overall, if it wasn’t for Apple’s iOS 14 changes, we would have seen positive quarter over quarter revenue growth,” she said. Shares of Facebook initially fell in the after-hours trading following the announcement of the results but then moved 2% higher than the closing price of $328.69.

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