Google's shares have lost a third of their value since the start of the year, and concern is growing whether the small text ads Google serves are partly to blame. That will be one of the top things Wall Street will pay attention to when Google (GOOG) reports earnings Thursday after the close of trading.
"Revenue growth and paid clicks. That is what is on everyone's minds," says Imran Khan, an Internet analyst with J.P. Morgan.
In late February, comScore released a controversial report that had many analysts convinced that Google was not immune to a recession. The comScore report suggested that Internet users in the United States were clicking on Google ads less frequently. Some analysts began slashing their price target on Google, which gets 97% of its revenues from online ads, after the report showed that Google's 'paid clicks' were flat in both January and February from the same period a year ago.
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