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Google’s quarterly profits jump 29% to $2.54 billion

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Google, bolstered by holiday-related ad clicks, said its fourth-quarter profit rose 29% to $2.54 billion from $1.97 billion a year earlier.

Revenues for the Web search giant climbed to $8.44 billion, up 26% from the same quarter in 2009.

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The earnings report came after the Mountain View company announced a major management shake-up.

Google said Eric Schmidt will step down as chief executive and co-founder Larry Page will take over. Schmidt will stay on as chairman of the board.

‘Q4 marked a terrific end to a stellar year,’ Schmidt said in a statement. ‘These results give us the optimism and confidence to invest heavily in future growth -- investments that will benefit our users, Google and the wider Web.’

Earnings for the last three months of the year came in at $7.81 per share, compared with $6.13 in the fourth quarter of 2009, the company said.

Paid clicks, which include clicks related to ads served on Google sites and the sites of its partners increased about 18%, Google said.

[Updated 4:36 p.m.: Google shares jumped to $635.50 in after-hours trading, after closing on Thursday down $4.98 to $626.77 per share.]

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Google CEO Eric Schmidt to step down, co-founder Larry Page to take over

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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

twitter.com/nateog

July, 9, 2009. Google co-founder Larry Page is to take over the day-to-day operations of the web search company as chief executive, Google said 20 January 2011. Current CEO Eric Schmidt will assume the role of executive chairman and will focus on deals and external relations. Sergey Brin, the other Google co-founder, will focus on new products the company said. Credit: Peter Foley/EPA


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