Google's pre-earnings killing spree continues

Google's Print Ads program is just the latest victim in what's becoming an all-out killfest at Google prior to this week's Q4 earnings call. Could it be that Google's been banged up by the recession more than we thought and that it's planning to report earnings significantly lower than expected?

After the banking meltdown on Wall St. yesterday, let's hope not. IBM posted stronger than expected earnings yesterday, and the market still swooned. But while IBM is a venerable firm that can sway markets, it doesn't seem to hold the clout of an Apple, Microsoft, and yes, Google. When it comes to tech, Google of late has been more of a go-to stock for investor confidence. A poor earnings report from Google could batter a reeling market and economy even further.

The evidence is there that investors are beginning to question Google a bit, as this Motley Fool article shows plainly. Events aren't on Google's side, what with online ad revenues falling 8% in Q4, a flurry of writedowns by its fellow Clearwire investors, and plummeting consumer confidence (fewer buyers mean fewer ad-clickers).

While the cuts Google's made so far seem to be on the order of smart business decisions -- Print Ads was never really going to be a money-maker, especially in light of Google's prominent online role in killing the print industry anyway -- the timing of all these announcements gives one pause. It makes you wonder. Is this just smart house-cleaning ahead of expected, or better than expected, results, or are the cuts a sign that all is not at all well at Google?

* * *

Like this post? Visit the Google Subnet home page for more news, blogs and podcasts.

More blog posts from Google Subnet:

Sign up for the weekly Google newsletter. (Click on News/Google News Alert.)

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on topics that are top of mind.
Take IDG’s 2020 IT Salary Survey: You’ll provide important data and have a chance to win $500.