Google profits surge by 700% as advertising sales boom

NEW YORK - Google has seen profits rise for the past quarter more than sevenfold to $381m (£214m), as marketers shifted their offline advertising budgets to online.

Google said that its AdSense programmes brought in revenue of $675m over the third quarter of the year, an increase of 7% on the previous quarter's figure of $630m. Ad revenues accounted for 43% of Google's total revenues of $1.6bn for the quarter ending September 30.

Shares in the company surged to record levels of $335.75 in after hours trading, as investors shrugged off fears that such growth cannot last.

Google's vice-president Jonathan Rosenberg also argued that it could be sustained because of the growth of online advertising.

"The engine driving our economic prosperity is this big sea change transitioning off-line dollars to online. You will see continued growth," he told analysts.

The past quarter has seen Google introduce a raft of new products, including Google Talk, a messaging service, and Google Mapping.

Eric Schmidt, chief executive of Google, said: "Although this is typically a slower season for internet properties, we had another exceptional quarter.

"Our focus on end users and on quality of information and advertising worldwide continues to work extremely well. We are very pleased with how well this is working at scale."

The news came in the same week that Google revealed it was dropping the name of its free email service Gmail in the UK, to replace it with the name Googlemail. This follows a legal dispute with London-based Independent International Investment Research, which had previously registered Gmail.

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