Amazon Revenues Defy Economic Gloom, Sales Up By 18 Percent

E-Tailer witnessed a surge in sales in the last quarter as its revenues reached a whopping $6.7 billion, beating Wall Street prediction by a significant margin.

Wall Street had expected Amazon sales to top $6.4 billion according to sources, but the world's biggest e-tailer proved them wrong, posting a strong 18 percent year-on-year increase, dampened only by an "unfavourable" currency exchange rate - the Dollar trading at record levels against the Sterling in UK.

Amazon's net income rose to $225 million in the last quarter, beating the analysts' expectations of around $216 million or 50 cents per share and causing the company's share to rise by more than 13 percent in after hours trading after a rather tame traditional session.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon's CEO, hinted at the company's electronic reader, the Kindle, as a contributor to Amazon's overall success, saying that they have experienced an "unusually strong demand for Kindle in the fourth quarter"; there have been unconfirmed rumours that the second version of the Kindle will be launched next month.

The company now expects revenues for the first quarter to range between $4.52 and $4.92 billion as it extends its domination online. Amazon has been aggressively growing well beyond its traditional core offering of books and media products. Sales in the "other items" categories have been doing exceptionally well posting a 34 percent increase.

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Our Comments

Amazon's "best ever" holiday season is in sharp contrast with Ebay, the online auctioneer, which announced that its net profits fell by 31 percent to $367 million for the quarter. This is despite the fact that Amazon is still a semi brick and mortar operation, unlike Ebay.

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