The optimism surrounding the company’s financial performance comes as the stock trades at near record levels.
Amazon.com is poised for another quarter of booming growth as its online retail and cloud-computing flywheels spin ever faster.
Wall Street expects the Seattle tech giant to report $32.7 billion in revenues when it unveils its third-quarter results Thursday. That’s a 29 percent jump from the same period last year and is squarely within the guidance Amazon offered to investors.
Analysts on average also expect 80 cents per share in earnings, up from 17 cents a year ago, according to Yahoo Finance.
The optimism about Amazon’s upcoming report card comes as shares for the world’s biggest online retailer swap hands at near record prices, putting the company’s value at about $407 billion, the fourth largest among U.S. publicly traded companies.
Most Read Business Stories
- Trump says he took the Fifth in New York civil investigation
- Boeing delivers its first 787 Dreamliner in more than a year
- Donald Trump 'took the Fifth.' What does it actually mean?
- Seattle ex-Twitter employee convicted of spying for Saudi royals
- Elon Musk’s antics turn owners and would-be buyers against Tesla
On Tuesday, shares traded at $839.01, close to 40 percent above levels seen a year ago. That highlights how investors have awakened to the profitability of Amazon Web Services (AWS), which is the lead player in the emerging field of cloud computing.
Wall Street also has warmed up to the retail business as well, which in the view of analysts has reached a scale that puts it ahead of competitors in the long run and promises to be more profitable as big investments in fulfillment centers and logistics play out.
On Monday, investment bank Goldman Sachs raised its 12-month price target to $1,050 from $920 as it raised its expectations of growth in coming quarters. If those predictions materialize, Amazon’s market value would hover around half a trillion dollars.
“We continue to believe that there is considerable potential for outperformance,” analysts with the bank said.
Amazon has historically surprised investors by posting unexpected profits or losses, but the rapid growth of the AWS business seems to have made analysts more used to seeing black ink.
The last loss the company posted came in the first quarter of 2015. Additionally, Amazon has topped expectations in four of the past six reported quarters.
For the third quarter, analysts with RBC Capital Markets expect AWS to have generated $3 billion in revenue, 42 percent more than in the same period this past year, and an operating profit of $522 million.
The jump would come amid a mass migration of corporate computing workloads from privately owned data centers to the public cloud operated by Amazon and rivals such as Microsoft and Google.
AWS’ take-home would exceed operating income for Amazon’s retail operation in North America, which RBC puts at $331 million. RBC analysts expect a $200 million operating loss in Amazon’s international retail segment, which includes a big bet on India.
Goldman’s analysts are even more bullish about the cloud. They expect $3.3 billion in revenue from AWS, a 60 percent jump, as Amazon makes more cloud-computing capacity available to clients.
It’s only the beginning, Goldman says, More than $300 billion in annual information technology spending is at stake as more companies bring their computing workloads to the cloud. Amazon, so far, is the largest cloud player, gathering $10 billion in revenue for the past 12 months vs. Microsoft’s $2.1 billion and Google’s $700 million, according to Goldman estimates.