January 31, 2014 Last Updated 9:51 am

Apple, Microsoft, Google and Amazon: Q4 in the books

The fourth quarter of 2013 may not have produced the kind of results that some analysts would have like to have seen, but a look at the revenue and net income reported by the big four tech/new media companies shows some pretty amazing numbers.

Earnings-chart-Q42013Almost without exception, investors immediately took down the stocks of each of the companies following the release of their earnings reports. Google and Microsoft stock now is trading at higher levels than before announcing earnings, while Apple has yet to recover. Amazon, which reported yesterday, is still falling.

Put one chart, you can compare revenue (sales) with net income. For Apple, which has been consistently reporting both record revenue and income, the company’s margins look quite normal for a successful company – it is simply the enormous size of those results that are so startling.

It is ironic, then, that Amazon should be getting hammered. It has consistently sacrificed income for revenue growth. But in Q4 the online retailer was able to report strong income growth – but investors, as usual, wanted to see even more than what was expected.

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