Amazon delivered its final quarterly earnings report for the 2019 fiscal year today, and investor response to a largely positive report describing big holiday sales and AWS performance drove the company’s market cap above $1 trillion.
Amazon told investors that it achieved $87.4 billion in revenue during the fourth quarter of its fiscal-year 2019.
This quarter included the holiday shopping frenzy, and Amazon impressed investors with a 21 percent increase in sales compared to the same quarter last year. Amazon executives said that the company quadrupled same-day and one-day shipping over last year’s figures, and it credited part of the holiday success to the company’s ability to offer expedient shipping. Achieving those speedy deliveries brought Amazon’s shipping expenditures in the quarter up to $12.9 billion, more than 40 percent more than last year.
CEO Jeff Bezos also said that Amazon now has more than 150 million Amazon Prime members globally.
Additionally, the big quarter came thanks to continued growth of Amazon Web Services (AWS), which saw a 34 percent year-over-year increase in sales for a total of $9.95 billion in revenue during the quarter. That said, some investors on the earnings call raised concerns that Amazon’s AWS growth is slowing—Q4 2018 saw a 45 percent YOY increase, a bigger step forward than this Q4 2019—as Microsoft’s Azure gradually gains ground on AWS in the market.
Amazon recently lost its bid for a major government contract (Project JEDI) worth around $10 billion to Microsoft, heating up the race between the two platforms. Google Cloud Platform is also a major competitor.
Despite slowing AWS growth, the huge holiday sales season and still-strong numbers for cloud wowed investors and analysts who expected slightly more modest growth than ended up being reported this quarter. Net income grew 8 percent to $3.27 billion.
Amazon shares jumped up by as much as 11 percent after the earnings report was shared with investors, pushing the company’s market cap above that $1 trillion threshold. Other $1 trillion-or-greater tech companies include Apple, Microsoft, and Alphabet, placing Amazon in an exclusive upper echelon. But that’s not news to anybody at this point.
Like Apple earlier this week, Amazon gave an unusually large guidance range for the next quarter (between $69 billion and $73 billion), mainly due to uncertainty about the impact of China’s coronavirus health crisis on various aspects of Amazon’s business and operations.