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Amazon Financials Surge, For Now

By Erik Gruenwedel | Posted: 22 Oct 2008

Spurred by sales increases in media, which include DVD, Blu-ray, music and electronics, Amazon.com reported third-quarter (ended Sept. 30) profit of $118 million, compared with $80 million in net income during the prior-year period.

The Seattle-based online retail behemoth said media sales increased to $1.2 billion, compared to $1 billion last year. The 15% increase in domestic growth of media sales, however, actually declined 18% from 38% growth last year.

Electronics sales, which include Blu-ray players and HDTVs, totaled $950 million, up from $631 million last year. While growth in electronics increased more than 50%, sales growth actually fell 3% from 54% growth last year.

Amazon does not break out sales of specific product categories.

Overall revenue topped $4.26 billion, up 31% from $3.26 billion last year.

Citing the uncertain economy, Amazon revised downward fourth quarter revenue guidance to between $6 billion and $7 billion, compared to estimates of $7.05 billion previously — a move that sent the stock plunging in aftermarket trading.

“It is becoming apparent that no company is immune from this downturn,” said Doug Anmuth, analyst with Barclays, in a note. “While we believe Amazon should continue to outperform broader retail and e-commerce, we think it will be impacted by the tough environment.”

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