Google Bullish in Face of US Downturn in Clicks

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A 35 per cent jump in second-quarter profits at Google yesterday failed to ease concerns about the impact of the ailing US economy on the internet search engine.

Google earned EUR1.25 billion (pounds 625 million) in the quarter to June, up from EUR925 million.

But the results were the fourth time it failed to hit targets in four years as a public firm, causing shares to fall seven per cent in after-hours trading in New York.

Google's management insisted the company will thrive even if the US economy weakens further. More than half the company's revenues - EUR2.8 billion - stem from international markets, helping offset economic weakness in the US.

However, the number of paid clicks on websites operated by Google and its partners during the second quarter fell one per cent from the first quarter, the first sequential downturn that the company has reported in the category. The 19 per cent year-over-year increase in Google's paid clicks was also the company's lowest ever.

Stanford Group analyst Clayton Moran viewed the performance as "confirmation that there is a slowdown in internet advertising that's affecting Google. …