Facebook beat analysts’ estimates for quarterly revenue on Thursday and forecast similar growth ahead, as businesses tapped its digital ads tools despite an unprecedented boycott and the economic upheaval of the coronavirus pandemic.
Facebook shares jumped 7% in extended trading after the world’s biggest social network posted revenue growth of 11%, its slowest ever but still far above analysts’ expectations of 3%, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
Ad sales, which contribute nearly all of Facebook’s revenue, rose 10% to $18.3 billion in the second quarter as people under lockdown spent more time online and businesses rapidly pivoted to e-commerce. Monthly active users rose to 2.7 billion, ahead of estimates of 2.6 billion.
The results were a boon for Facebook a day after its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, took sharp jabs in a U.S. congressional hearing. Zuckerberg was among four top tech CEOs who were grilled by lawmakers on alleged abuses of market power.
On a call with investors Thursday, Facebook executives sounded notes of defiance about both demands for aggressive regulation and the July advertising boycott, which sought to pressure Facebook to take more action against hate speech.
Zuckerberg said he was “troubled” by calls to “go after” targeted advertising online. “This would reduce opportunities for small businesses so much that it would probably be felt at a macroeconomic level. Is that really what policymakers want in