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Thu 26 Oct 2017 04:05 PM

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Twitter narrows losses to $21m in signs of a turnaround

Social network's monthly active user base rises slightly to 330 million, roughly in line with forecasts

Twitter narrows losses to $21m in signs of a turnaround
(Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Twitter has delivered signs of a turnaround in its fortunes - narrowing its losses and showing signs toward profitability - in a quarterly update that sent its shares sharply higher.

The social network, which has struggled to keep pace with rivals, said it could show its first net profit in the coming quarter if the latest trends continue.

Twitter posted a loss of $21 million in the third quarter, a marked improvement from the $103 million deficit a year ago.

Revenues were $590 million, a decrease of four percent from a year ago but not as bad as analysts had feared for the one-to-many messaging platform.

Its monthly active user base rose slightly to 330 million, roughly in line with forecasts. And Twitter said daily active users - a metric for which it has declined to offer details - rose 14 percent from last year.

Twitter shares rallied 8.2 percent in pre-market trading following the release of the results.

"We're proud that the improvements we're making to the product continue to bring people back to Twitter on a daily basis," chief executive Jack Dorsey said.

"It's our job to help people stay informed about what’s happening in the world and what people are talking about, and we're focused on making our service faster, easier to use and more relevant to more people every day."

While Twitter has built a solid core base of celebrities, politicians and journalists, it has failed to achieve the broader appeal of Facebook and other social platforms, hurting its ability to bring in ad revenues.

Twitter has stepped up efforts to boost its user base and engagement, notably with video partnerships, as part of its turnaround efforts.

In a statement, Twitter said it would "likely" show its first net profit in the fourth quarter if growth reaches the high end of its target.

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