Expedia profits slip due to higher taxes

City A.M. Reporter
ONLINE travel agency Expedia said yesterday its quarterly profit slipped 30 per cent due to a higher tax rate and increased interest expense.

The largest online travel agency said fourth-quarter net income amounted to $71.3m (£44.3m), or 25 cents per share, compared with $102.2m, or 35 cents per share, a year ago.

Excluding one-time items, Expedia said it earned 32 cents per share, compared with analysts’ average estimate of 36 cents per share.

The total value of Expedia’s bookings rose 14 per cent in the quarter from a year ago to $5.75bn.
The company posted revenue of $808.4m, compared with forecasts for $801.3m. Revenue was $697.5m in the same period a year ago.

Expedia’s operating margin narrowed to 18.5 per cent from 20.2 per cent. Gross bookings climbed 14 per cent, while transactions rose 13 per cent. Worldwide hotel revenue climbed 15 per cent, with nights stayed rising. Air revenue also increased 15 per cent.

Shares of Expedia fell 5.3 per cent to $24.33 following the release of its earnings from their $25.69 close in regular trading on Nasdaq.