Facebook shares fall 9% on forecast of higher expenses

Social network warned it will invest heavily to develop WhatsApp and Oculus acquisitions

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The Independent Online

Facebook shares fell 9 per cent in after hours trading after the social network warned expenses could soar up to 75 per cent next year.

The social network also forecast slightly slower revenue growth for the current quarter of 40 per cent to 47 per cent, a slight disappointment for some analysts.

Facebook’s chief financial officer David Wehner told analysts the company expects expenses to rise between 55 per cent and 75 per cent in 2015 as it invests in its WhatsApp and Oculus acquisitions and in its staff.


“We plan on 2015 being a significant investment year,” saidWehner. “We're investing where we think there’s a great opportunity for long term growth.”

Facebook shares were down just over 9 per cent at $73.49 in after hours trading.

Facebook said its third-quarter net income rose to $806 million, or 30 cents a share, from $425 million, or 17 cents a share in the year-ago quarter.

Revenue from advertising was $2.96 billion in the third quarter, a 64 per cent jump from the same period last year, with mobile ads making up 66 per cent of advertising revenue, up from 49 per cent.

The social network said its monthly active users were up 14 per cent year-over-year to 1.35 billion as of September 30, and daily active users rose 19 per cent year-over-year to an average of 864 million for September.

“We continue to focus on serving our community well and continue to invest in connecting the world over the next decade,” said Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg.