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Author: Alan LittleDate: 2021-11-04

Ride-hailing app Lyft (LYFT) +7% on “great quarter”, surprise profit

Ride-hailing app Lyft (LYFT) made gains of 7% on Wednesday after it said that a wider pool of drivers and a growing number of trips helped it to a surprise Q3 profit.

Investors were buying into Lyft (LYFT) on Wednesday after the ridesharing app delivered a surprise Q3 profit as new drivers flocked to the platform and customers made more trips to airports.

Lyft, like rival Uber (UBER), struggled during the pandemic as people stayed at home, but with a return to normality over the summer, demand for taxi services during the working week and weekend soared.

CEO Logan Green said that the supply of drivers jumped by around 45% compared to a year ago, which laid the foundation for a “great quarter.”

The raw numbers back up that statement as Lyft came in with a $0.05 earnings per share against the $0.03 per share loss anticipated by Wall Street.

Revenue of $864.4m also eased past the $862.7m consensuses after surging 73% year-over-year, while revenue per active rider climbed 14% to $45.63 for another beat.

One sticking point was the total number of active riders, which has increased significantly but at 18.9 million was 800,000 short of the 19.7 million figure that was expected.

Lyft will be happy to have rebounded to a profit, though after a tumultuous 18 months beset by high costs, a low driver supply, and lengthy wait times.

Drivers are returning to the platform en masse, and finance chief Brian Roberts sees the positive trends continuing during the next few months.

In a statement, he said: “Given our success onboarding new drivers and expected supply tailwinds, we anticipate our service levels will naturally improve in Q4 and lead to lower prices.”

Lyft and Uber both got a boost in trading on Wednesday, with the former rising 7.68% to $48.80 and the latter advancing 5.75% to $45.35 by early afternoon in New York.

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