by Tom Taulli | January 22, 2013 12:02 pm
Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is set to report fourth-quarter earnings after today’s bell. And given the recent motion in GOOG — a 5% slide in the past couple weeks — investors clearly are a little on edge.
The Street consensus is for Google to report $8.63 per share in earnings on revenues of $12.4 billion. The company itself provides no guidance.
A big concern for investors is Google’s mobile business. While the company has seen tremendous growth from its Android operating system, it has been tough to monetize that traffic. (And, for what it’s worth, weakness for Google here might not bode well for Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), which has had similar difficulties.)
Investors also will want to get more details on the Motorola business — one Google purchased for $12.4 billion, and one that has continued to be a drag thanks to intense competition from Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Samsung (PINK:SSNLF) and others.
Back in December, Google sold off Motorola’s set-top business for $2.35 billion to Arris. The deal was smart, but it could cause some confusion for analysts. Last week, Google put out a rare memo that indicated earnings estimates might be a bit too bullish on the impact from the transaction.
That means there could be some continued downside pressure when Google reports — a real concern considering Q3’s report, when GOOG plunged more than 10% after a big miss on revenues.
Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPO Playbook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He is also the author of “How to Create the Next Facebook” and “High-Profit IPO Strategies: Finding Breakout IPOs for Investors and Traders.” Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
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