Alibaba tops sales forecasts, shares soar 5%

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Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

Alibaba reported quarterly sales that trumped forecasts but profits that fell short of analysts' expectations. The shares soared 4% in pre-market trading on Thursday.

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The Chinese e-commerce giant's revenues rose 39% to $24.2 billion yuan ($3.7 billion), beating the forecast for 23.2 billion. Adjusted earnings per share came in at 3.02 yuan, versus 3.52 yuan expected according to Bloomberg.

Alibaba's online platforms sold goods worth more than 3 trillion yuan in March for the first time, amid a struggling Chinese economy.

Alibaba's performance in its fiscal fourth quarter was also boosted by a 175% year-on-year growth in its cloud computing and internet infrastructure business.

The company reported growth on Taobao, its online shopping site similar to Amazon and eBay, as it pushed further into rural China. Quarterly mobile revenues jumped 149% year-over-year to $2.02 billion.

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