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Twitter profit soars as user base shrinks

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(FILES) In this file photo taken on November 4, 2016, the Twitter logo is seen on a sign at the company’s headquarters in San Francisco, California. – Twitter reported on October 25, 2018, stronger-than-expected profits and revenues in the third quarter, igniting a strong rally in shares of the key social network. (Photo by JOSH EDELSON / AFP)

Twitter said Thursday profits rose sharply in the fourth quarter, lifted by gains in advertising despite a drop in its global user base.

The short-messaging platform said it posted a $255 million profit in the final three months of 2018, compared with $91 million a year earlier, as revenues rose 24 percent to $909 million.

But Twitter’s base of monthly active users declined to 321 million — a drop of nine million from a year earlier and five million from the prior quarter.

Twitter said it would stop using the monthly user base metric and instead report “monetizable” daily active users in the US and worldwide.

Using that measure, Twitter showed a base of 126 million worldwide, up nine percent over the year.

“2018 is proof that our long-term strategy is working,” said chief executive Jack Dorsey.

“Our efforts to improve health have delivered important results, and new product features like a single switch to move between latest and most relevant tweets have been embraced by the people who use Twitter. We enter this year confident that we will continue to deliver strong performance by focusing on making Twitter a healthier and more conversational service.”

Twitter shares rose 2.4 percent in pre-market trade following the report.


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