10-29-13 5:18 PM EDT | Email Article

By Benjamin Pimentel, MarketWatch


SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- LinkedIn Corp. swung to a loss on Tuesday although the professional social network beat Wall Street estimates and announced that it now has more than 259 million members.


However, LinkedIn (LNKD) shares fell more than 2% after hours as the company's quarterly revenue outlook for the current quarter fell below expectations, although its full-year revenue target was largely in line with consensus.


LinkedIn reported a third-quarter loss of $3.36 million, or 3 cents a share, compared with a profit of $2.3 million, or 2 cents a share, for the year-earlier period.


Revenue rose to $393 million from $252 million. On an adjusted basis, the company reported a profit of 39 cents a share.


Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters on average were expecting the Mountain View, Calif.-based social network to report a profit of 32 cents a share, on revenue of $385 million.


For the current quarter, LinkedIn expects revenue in the range of $415 million to $420 million. Analysts were expecting revenue of $438 million. For the full year, LinkedIn raised its revenue outlook to $1.5 billion which is in line with current estimates.


LinkedIn's hiring and marketing services business posted strong growth, with its talent solutions unit growing revenue by 62% and its marketing solutions division recording 38% gain. Revenue at LinkedIn's premium subscriptions business also grew by 61%.


"Increased member growth and engagement helped drive strong financial results in the third quarter," Chief Executive Jeff Weiner said in a statement.


BGC Partners analyst Colin Gillis attributed the selloff to elevated expectations, noting LinkedIn's stock gains recently. LinkedIn's stock has risen 115% year-to-date.


"The guys who want to push the stock down say the magnitude of the beat is smaller," he told MarketWatch. "On the other side, you have two revenue streams growing by more than 60. The metrics are fine."


LinkedIn grew its user base by 38% year-over-year to more than 259 million, which is better than consensus expectations, Gillis said.

-Benjamin Pimentel; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com


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10-29-13 1718ET

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