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Amazon’s first quarter sales up 26%, net earnings down 31%

In the US, Amazon has posted a 26% increase in revenue in the first quarter of 2020, up to US$75.5 billion (A$118.2b), reports Publishers Weekly.

Sales through the company’s online store were up 24% compared to the same period in 2019, with third-party sales and subscription services revenue were up by 30% and 28% respectively. Despite the revenue rise, net earnings were down 31%, to US$2.5 billion (A$3.9b).

In a stark example of the economic uncertainty faced by retailers worldwide, Amazon’s forecast for its second quarter gave a range between a profit of US$1.5 billion (A$2.35b) and a loss of $1.5 billion. It said extra spending on Covid-19 measures will cut profits in the second quarter, even as sales are expected to increase 18% to 28%.

Of the first quarter results, Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky said Amazon ‘dampened demand’ for non-essential items by cutting back on marketing when orders started to surge in early March due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Olsvasky said Amazon is ‘working to get back to a more normal delivery schedule for non-essential products’, but could not give a time-frame of when shipping will return to pre-pandemic levels.


Category: International news