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Facebook revenue jumps 61% on mobile ad strength

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SAN FRANCISCO — Fueled by strong demand for mobile advertising, Facebook extended its hot streak in the second quarter, gaining on its chief competitor, Google, and positioning itself as a top player in digital advertising.

The giant social network scorched analyst estimates for the ninth straight quarter.

Facebook grew revenue 61% and more than doubled second-quarter profit while making even more money from ads targeted at users on mobile devices, sending shares to record highs in after-hours trading on Wednesday.

“Facebook is firing on all cylinders, and they are doing it in a very efficient way,” JMP Securities analyst Ron Josey said. “You would be hard-pressed to find another company of this size that has grown advertising this fast.”

Facebook reported second-quarter revenue of $2.9 billion, an increase of 61% from $1.8 billion a year ago. Total advertising revenue was nearly $2.7 billion, a 67% increase. Mobile advertising grew 151% to represent 62% of overall advertising revenue.

Earnings per share, excluding certain items, were 42 cents, up 121% from 19 cents a year earlier.

Wall Street had anticipated another strong showing from Facebook.

Analysts predicted revenue of $2.8 billion, 55% higher than a year ago. Earnings per share, excluding certain items, were expected to be 32 cents, up 68%.

Two years after its rocky debut as a publicly traded company, Facebook just keeps climbing to new heights as an emerging power in digital advertising.

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