Equities Tech

Twitter shares slump as average monthly user numbers fall

Twitter shares opened sharply lower Friday, as investors showed their concern over a decline in monthly active users. However, almost all its other figures were positive as the social media platform delivered a third straight quarter of profits.

By 1440 BST, Twitter shares were 15.90% lower at $36.12. The sock has been a little mixed in recent weeks.

Twitter Q2 earnings

Twitter said after the US Thursday closing bell, that second quarter revenues were up 24% at $711 million, from a year earlier. Advertising was a major boost, with revenues there hitting $601 million. And, its net income increased 14% to $100 million in Q2, up from a marginal loss in 2017 Q2.

The results showed that daily average user growth was 11% from the same period in 2017. However, a decline in the number of average monthly users to 335 million in Q2 from 336 million a year earlier, brought a halt to the positive tone of the earnings release.

The tech firm explained that the decline was due – in part – to Twitter's action to delete and remove fake accounts.

“We want people to feel safe freely expressing themselves and have launched new tools to address problem behaviours that distort and distract from the public conversation,” said Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.

Fake account removal to continue

While Twitter outlined a positive outlook for revenues, profits and its advertising business in the coming quarter, it also warned that more accounts would likely be deleted and that monthly user numbers may slip again.

“We continue to invest in improving the health of the public conversation on Twitter, making the service better by integrating new behavioural signals to remove spammy and suspicious accounts and continuing to prioritize the long-term health of the platform over near-term metrics,” the social media platform said in a letter to shareholders.

“We also acquired Smyte, a company that specializes in spam prevention, safety, and security.”

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