CEO Eric Schmidt’s has repeatedly said that the economic downturn won’t dent Google (NSDQ: GOOG) — but that doesn’t seem to have satisfied analysts’ doubts. With the stock now trading below $300 for the first time since October 2005, MarketWatch reports that analysts have cut their estimates on Google’s Q4 profits and revenue. Google’s stock was down 6.57 percent, to $291.00, at the 4 p.m. close today.
On average, analysts expect Google to post earnings of $5.12 a share by the end of this quarter, according to a consensus estimate by FactSet Research. That same analyst compilation calls for $4.3 billion in net revenue. Here’s a rundown of the revised estimates:
– Citigroup’s Mark Mahaney, in a client note, cut his estimates by 3 percent for Q4 profit and net revenue, to $5.03 a share and $4.16 billion, respectively. He still maintains a “buy” rating on the search giant.
– Collins Stewart’s Sandeep Aggarwal revised his profit estimate for Google’s Q4 to $5.10 a share, down from his previous $5.21 call. He also lowered his net revenue estimate to $4.26 billion from $4.37 billion. While he applauded Google’s efforts to increase revenue on click-throughs, it won’t be enough to beat back the severe recessionary pressures facing Google and other companies that rely on online ads. That said, Aggarwal noted that search continues to maintain its strength versus the much weaker display category.