Amazon Q2 Earnings Smash Wall Street Expectations One Day After CEO’s DC Testimony

Bezos calls earnings period “another highly unusual quarter”

Last Updated: July 30, 2020 @ 3:14 PM

One day after its CEO Jeff Bezos testified before Congress, Amazon reported second quarter earnings that obliterated Wall Street’s expectations.

For Q2, Amazon’s sales hit $88.9 billion, up 41% from the same time last year and beating analyst projections of $81.5 billion. Its earnings per share of $10.30 was nearly $9 higher than analysts’ expectations of $1.46 EPS.

“This was another highly unusual quarter, and I couldn’t be more proud of and grateful to our employees around the globe,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. “As expected, we spent over $4 billion on incremental COVID-19-related costs in the quarter to help keep employees safe and deliver products to customers in this time of high demand–purchasing personal protective equipment, increasing cleaning of our facilities, following new safety process paths, adding new backup family care benefits, and paying a special thank you bonus of over $500 million to front-line employees and delivery partners. We’ve created over 175,000 new jobs since March and are in the process of bringing 125,000 of these employees into regular, full-time positions. And third-party sales again grew faster this quarter than Amazon’s first-party sales. Lastly, even in this unpredictable time, we injected significant money into the economy this quarter, investing over $9 billion in capital projects, including fulfillment, transportation, and AWS.”

During the quarter, Amazon Prime Video launched its Watch Parties feature, which allows viewers to interact with eachother in private chat rooms. Amazon’s stock gained 6% in after-hours trading Thursday. Bezos was not on Amazon’s call with analysts; CFO Brian Olsavsky led the proceedings.

For third quarter, Amazon forecasts net sales of $87-93 billion.

Bezos along with other tech CEOs testified on front of Congress Wednesday regarding potential antitrust practices. He went nearly two hours without being asked a single question, until Rep. Pramila Jayapal, from Amazon’s home state of Washington, pressed Bezos on Amazon’s business practices. “Let me ask you, Mr. Bezos, does Amazon ever access and use seller data when making business decisions?” the Democrat asked.

Bezos said Amazon’s policy prohibits such a move, but that he “can’t guarantee” it’s never happened.

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