By Maria Armental
Online marketplace eBay Inc.'s stock fell 7.5% on Thursday following third-quarter results that showed profit and revenue gains but also slowing near-term trends.
Shares, which traded as low as $48.03, closed at $49.28, making it the second-worst performer in the S&P 500.
The company, which at 25 years old is considered an online shopping pioneer, boasts some 183 million buyers and nearly 19 million sellers.
Once a highflying internet conglomerate with brands like PayPal and StubHub, eBay has been moving to focus on its core business. The sale of its classified-ads business is expected to close in the first quarter.
"We are in the first phase of a multiyear journey, [with] many tech-led improvements for buyers and sellers yet to come," Chief Executive Jamie Iannone said in an earnings call.
For example, Mr. Iannone said, eBay improved search results to help buyers find items, which already helped sales in the most recent quarter.
Revenue for the quarter rose to $2.61 billion, with $2.4 billion of transaction revenue, company officials said, pointing to strength in payments and advertising partially offsetting the deceleration in gross merchandise value, a key performance metric that looks at the total value of goods sold.
But Rick Watson, an internet retail veteran who now runs e-commerce consultancy RMW Commerce Consulting, said eBay discussed incremental improvements, but "I did not hear a single major initiative ... that would chart a new course for eBay."
Mr. Watson pointed to positives, like the increase in active users and gross merchandise value. But it's not clear eBay is specifically doing anything other than benefiting from cyclical trends, COVID, etc., Mr. Watson said, adding that ultimately, he feels eBay seems to be on a Yahoo-like decline, and is still in need of a major reset.
Company officials declined to comment Thursday through a spokesperson, pointing instead to statements during the earnings call including Mr. Iannone's saying that eBay sees "a long runway to accelerate GMV growth given the $500 billion global total addressable market we are competing for, but it will take time."
Write to Maria Armental at firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires