Facebook on Wednesday reported that its profit in the recently ended quarter nearly doubled to $9.5 billion on sharp gains in digital advertising as the pandemic kept more people glued to the internet.
"We had a strong quarter as we helped people stay connected and businesses grow," Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg said in an earnings release.
Revenue from online ads hit $25.4 billion, up some 46 percent from the same quarter a year earlier. The number of people using the leading social network monthly climbed 10 percent to 2.85 billion, according to the Silicon Valley giant.
The earnings trounced market expectations, causing shares to jump nearly five percent in after-market trades.
The leading social network and its "family" of services including Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger ended March with 3.45 billion monthly users overall in a 15 percent increase from a year earlier.
Facebook's stellar earnings came as regulators in the US and abroad threaten to crack down on Internet giants they fear have become too powerful.
Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple are among tech titans that have thrived as the pandemic accelerated a shift to working, learning, shopping and socializing online.
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