Facebook reports more than $6B US net income in 3rd quarter

Facebook Inc. on Wednesday reported third-quarter net income of $6.09 billion US. The results topped Wall Street expectations.

Investors sent Facebook's stock up 3 per cent in after-hours trading following the report

A conference worker passes a demo booth at Facebook's annual developer conference, in San Jose, Calif., April 18, 2017. Facebook Inc. reported third quarter net income of $6.09 billion US on Wednesday. (Noah Berger/The Associated Press)

Facebook on Wednesday reported solid third-quarter results showing steady growth in its user base even as it faces broad regulatory threats and criticism over its power and negative effects on society.

Facebook said Wednesday that it earned $6.09 billion US, or $2.12 per share, in the July-September quarter, up 19 per cent from $5.14 billion, or $1.76 per share, in the same period a year earlier.

Revenue grew 29 per cent to $17.65 billion from $13.73 billion. Analysts on FactSet had expected earnings of $2.11 per share and revenue of $17.37 billion.

Facebook ended the quarter with 2.45 billion monthly users, up 8 per cent from a year earlier. It also said that about 2.8 billion people use at least one of its services — Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp or Instagram — at least once a month.

The company based in Menlo Park, Calif., has had a rough couple of years and is under growing regulatory scrutiny around the world. In the U.S., it faces several government investigations for alleged anti-competitive behaviour, including probes by the Federal Trade Commission and 46 state attorneys general.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced prickly questioning from members of Congress last week when he testified about the company's plans for a digital cryptocurrency.

Investors sent Facebook's stock up 3 per cent in after-hours trading following the earnings report.