EBay meets investor expectations for holiday quarter

EBay reported its fourth quarter earnings for the bell. Investors were closely watching the holiday quarter to see if it met expectations, which it did. The stock rose 7% in initial after hours trading.

Gross merchandise volume, a metric of that shows the total dollar value of all purchases on eBay’s platforms, came in at $22.3 billion, when analysts were expecting $22.4 billion. Adjusted earnings per share were 54 cents, when Wall Street predicted 53 cents. Revenue was on par with the $2.4 billion analysts expected.

“During the holiday season, eBay was one of the top consumer shopping destinations in the world and the second most visited eCommerce site in the U.S.,” said Devin Wenig, President and CEO of eBay Inc, in a statement. “In 2017, we intend to accelerate the progress that we made last year as we continue to execute our business strategy.”

Some of eBay’s recent growth stems from its “structured data” initiative, which essentially means they’ve been using keyword tags to improve Google search results and make things easier to find on the website.

They have also expanded their fixed-price merchandise business to compete more directly with Amazon and offset their shrinking auctions business.

But overall, growth for the company has been relatively slow. Revenue was up just 3% over last year and GMV was up 5% on a foreign exchange neutral basis.

After splitting from PayPal in 2015, eBay was mainly left with its name-bearing marketplace business and StubHub, their platform for sports and concert tickets. StubHub has been one of their bigger growth engines in the past year and investors will be watching it to see if it continues. It’s net transaction revenue for the quarter was $274 million, versus $232 million in the same period the year before.

EBay shares are up about 16% since last year.