Facebook’s quarterly earnings surpass $5bn for first time thanks to ad sales

Facebook is poised to overtake Google as most powerful internet company, as fourth-quarter profits more than doubled and ad revenue increased by 56.8%

Facebook is growing rapidly as it enters adolescence, putting it in a position to challenge Google as the internet’s most powerful company.

The social-networking company’s fourth-quarter report released Wednesday marked the first time that Facebook’s quarterly revenue has surpassed $5bn, with a far better-than-expected 51.7% jump as new advertising formats and an improved mobile app drove a sharp rise in ad sales.

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Cameron too close to Google, say critics, after £130m tax deal

Vince Cable, Rupert Murdoch and Margaret Hodge among figures to speak out as questions grow over government links with senior company executives

David Cameron has been accused of getting too close to Google amid growing anger over the government’s £130m tax deal, which has been criticised for being too lenient towards the tech giant.

Former cabinet minister Vince Cable, media mogul Rupert Murdoch and former chair of the Commons public accounts committee Margaret Hodge all voiced concerns on Wednesday that Cameron and George Osborne had allowed the tech giant to hold too much sway.

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Lyft provides new benefits to drivers in employment status settlement

The ride-hailing firm will pay $12.25m to settle a California suit but will not classify its workers as employees, as analyst says company ‘got off lightly’

Ride-hailing service Lyft has agreed to settle a proposed class action lawsuit in California by giving drivers additional workplace protections but without classifying them as employees, removing a major threat to its business model.

The settlement agreement, filed late on Tuesday in San Francisco federal court, provides for Lyft to pay $12.25m, as well as give drivers notice if they are to be deactivated from the platform and other benefits.

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