Twitter sales surge, as loss narrows

NEW YORK - Twitter (TWTR) surprised investors with a strong earnings report Tuesday even as the company searches for a permanent CEO and faces ongoing challenges growing its user base.

San Francisco-based Twitter Inc. posted a loss of $136.7 million, or 21 cents per share, in the April-June period. That compares with a loss of $144.6 million, or 24 cents per share, a year earlier.

Adjusted earnings were 7 cents per share, above the 5 cents that analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research had expected.

Revenue jumped 61 percent to $502.4 million from $312.2 million. Analysts had expected lower revenue of $487.4 million.

Interim CEO Jack Dorsey said that while the results show "good progress in monetization," the company is "not satisfied" with the growth of its audience.

On average, Twitter had 316 million monthly active users in the second quarter, up 15 percent year-over-year but up less than 3 percent from the first quarter of this year.

User growth has been an ongoing challenge for Twitter, as it tries to make its service a mass-market product rather than a niche short-messaging service popular with journalists, celebrities and young people.

For the current quarter ending in September, Twitter said it expects revenue in the range of $545 million to $560 million. Analysts surveyed by Zacks expected revenue of $563.9 million.

The company expects full-year revenue in the range of $2.2 billion to $2.27 billion.

Twitter's shares rose $2.07, or 5.7 percent, to $38.61 in after-hours trading.

Twitter shares have increased roughly 2 percent since the beginning of the year, and have been trading near a 52-week low. They closed Tuesday at $36.54, a decline of nearly 4 percent in the last 12 months.