Facebook shares hit record highs despite warning on future profitability

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Yesterday afternoon-one day after Facebook, along with Google and Twitter, testified to U.S. Congress about the company's involvement with Russian Federation in last year's presidential election-CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed Facebook's third-quarter earnings with investors.

Facebook's third-quarter profit and sales exceeded Wall Street expectations, however the social media giant's shares slid after it admitted that 2018 expenses would rise 45% to 60%, outpacing expected sales.

Away from the financials, Facebook's daily active users (DAUs) and monthly active users (MAUs) saw a YoY increase of 16 per cent. DAUs were 1.37bn on average for September 2017, while MAUs were 2.07bn as of 30 September. Daily active users: 1.37 billion, up from 1.32 billion last quarter.

"None of that matters if our services are used in ways that don't bring people closer together - or if the foundation of our society is undermined by foreign interference", Zuckerberg said to investors.

Despite mounting criticism from U.S. lawmakers over Russia's use of its platform to spread propaganda, the company's stock has been trading at all-time highs ahead of Wednesday's results.

Protecting the Facebook community is more important than "maximizing our profits", Zuckerberg said on the call. Earnings per share were $1.59, above the $1.28 a share expected.

Facebook crushed its third-quarter earnings on Wednesday, sending its shares soaring in after-hours trading.

The world's number one social network along with Twitter and Google is under pressure from United States politicians over its role in the last presidential election.

Facebook has acknowledged that its growth rate is slowing down, but now the company is shifting its focus to increase user engagements with videos and its new subscription platform, which can generate even more profits.

Ad revenue acceleration 47% YoY.

The latest data on Instagram is on top of the estimated 126 million Americans exposed to Facebook posts from Russian entities seeking to create divisions during the election campaign.

Read the full earnings release here.

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California told the hearing which included lawyers for Facebook, Google and Twitter that the companies need to do more to help combat "cyber warfare". "We're building AI to go after more different areas of harmful content and finding fake accounts and other bad actors in the system".

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