Twitter Lowers Quarterly Sales Forecast, Warns of Loss in Period

Twitter Inc. lowered its revenue forecast for the current quarter, and warned investors it will lose money in the period due to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.

First-quarter revenue will be down “slightly” year-over-year, and Twitter will incur an operating loss after nine straight periods of quarterly profit under general accounting principles, the company said Monday in a statement.

“The COVID-19 impact began in Asia, and as it unfolded into a global pandemic, it has impacted Twitter’s advertising revenue globally more significantly in the last few weeks,” said Ned Segal, Twitter’s chief financial officer, in the statement.

Twitter’s user growth has increased in light of the disease sparked by the virus, as more and more people flock to the service for breaking news updates. So far in the first quarter of the year, 164 million users on average have visited Twitter every day, the company said, an increase of 12 million from last quarter and 23% from a year ago.

Its unclear how these revisions will impact Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey’s job. Earlier this month, the company settled with a group of activist investors who wanted to push Dorsey out, essentially putting him on a performance improvement plan to increase usage and Twitter’s business.

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