Amazon profits down on pandemic related costs


NEW YORK – Amazon’s profit fell 29 percent in the first quarter as its costs for shipping millions of packages to home-bound customers rose. But the online retail behemoth said its sales soared as more people opt to shop online during the coronavirus pandemic.

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos said the company will likely spend at least US$4 billion during the second quarter in order to speed up delivery times and buy masks and other protection equipment for workers in its warehouses and Whole Foods supermarkets.

Shares of Inc. fell about five percent in after-hours trading Thursday following the release of the earnings report.

The Seattle-based company reported net income of $2.54 billion in the first quarter, compared with $3.56 billion a year ago. Earnings per share came to $5.01, below the $6.23 analysts expected, according to FactSet.

Revenue rose 26 percent to $75.5 billion, beating expectations of $73.7 billion.