Pinterest beats on earnings and revenue even as monthly user number drops


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Benjamin “Ben'” Silbermann, co-founder and chief executive officer of Pinterest.
Patrick T. Fallon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Pinterest on Thursday reported better-than-expected earnings and revenue for the third quarter despite a decline in monthly users.

The company’s stock rose 6% in extended trading after closing at its lowest in over a year during the regular session.

Here are the key numbers:

  • Adjusted earnings per share: 28 cents vs. 23 cents expected by Refinitiv
  • Revenue: $633 million vs. $630.9 million expected by Refinitiv
  • Monthly active users: 444 million vs. 460 million expected by StreetAccount
  • Average revenue per user: $1.41 vs. $1.38 forecast by StreetAccount

Pinterest said monthly active users fell 2% from the 454 million the company reported in July. This was the second quarter in a row that Pinterest saw a decline in monthly users.

The company said that, as of Nov. 2, its U.S. MAUs were approximately 89 million. Global MAUs totaled 447 million. Those numbers are down 9% and 2.6%, respectively, from the fourth quarter 2020.

Revenue climbed nearly 43% from a year earlier. Pinterest also posted a net income of $94 million, even with its profit from a year ago.

The company was able to report strong revenue and profit numbers by generating more money from each user. Pinterest’s average revenue per user was up 37% compared with a year prior.

Pinterest provided a fourth-quarter revenue growth estimate “in the high teens” on a year-to-year basis. That was below Refinitiv expectations of 23.9% growth.

Advertisers’ willingness to spend on Pinterest’s services has fluctuated due to pandemic-related factors, including supply chain issues, rising commodity prices and labor shortages, the company said in a regulatory filing. The company also said it has experienced — and may continue to see — lower levels of user engagement, growth and retention rates as pandemic restrictions begin to lessen.

Pinterest noted that Apple’s iOS privacy changes have affected its “ability to track user actions off our platform and connect their interactions with on-platform advertising.”

While the company didn’t provide specific details about how Apple’s new feature affected its financial results, other social media apps like Snap and Facebook said the change was a significant drag on their business in the latest quarter.

The company did not address reports about a potential takeover by PayPal.

PayPal was reportedly in talks last month to buy Pinterest, though the payments company subsequently said it was not pursuing a deal.

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