Google Inc's quarterly results fell well short of Wall Street's expectations after its core advertising business slowed, stunning investors accustomed to consistently rapid growth from the Internet giant and wiping more than 9% off its market value.
The disappointing numbers on Thursday came hours ahead of schedule in a rare instance of premature filing. Google blamed the misfire on an unauthorised filing by its financial printers RR Donnelley & Sons and later confirmed the numbers accuracy.
The earnings report revealed a weakening in Google's core Internet advertising business and persistent losses at its recently acquired cellphone business Motorola Mobility.
Google, which has been struggling to turn around a Motorola Mobility hardware business it bought for $12.5 billion, reported a 20% dive in net income to $2.2 billion. Excluding certain items, it earned $9.03 a share vastly underperforming the $10.65 analysts had expected on average.
Net revenue growth at Google's main Internet business increased 17% year-over-year, the first time growth in that business has fallen below 20% since 2009. Google reported net revenue - excluding traffic acquisition costs - of $11.3 billion for the third quarter below Wall Street s expectations for about $11.9 billion.
Shares of Google, the world s No. 1 Internet search engine, finished Thursday's regular trading session down 8% at $695 after a brief trading halt.