Amazon turned an unexpected profit during its holiday quarter, and Wall Street has responded by driving the company’s stock up more than 14 percent in the day following the news.
The Seattle-based tech giant reported earnings yesterday of 45 cents a share, blowing out earnings expectations of 17 cents a share. The profits come during what’s traditionally Amazon’s biggest quarter of the year, thanks to the holiday shopping season. What’s more, membership in Amazon Prime grew 53 percent over the course of 2014, even as Amazon raised the price for its free shipping service by $20 to $99 a year.
Amazon’s profits come at an important time for the company on Wall Street. Its second and third quarters disappointed investors, and this quarter has driven new interest in Amazon’s business. Turning a profit – its largest since 2007 – shows that Amazon is capable of making money at a time when people have been skeptical of its financial outlook.