EBay Inc. yesterday reported a third-quarter loss of more than $936-million - a rare plunge into the red for the e-commerce juggernaut caused by previously announced charges to its Skype telecommunications division. But San Jose, Calif.-based eBay still easily exceeded Wall Street's expectations for the quarter ended Sept. 30, thanks to record revenue of $1.89-billion, up 30 per cent from the year-ago quarter. Executives credited record revenue at the PayPal electronic payment division, and brisk sales outside of the United States and at ticket broker StubHub.com. Early this month, eBay announced it would take a $900-million writedown in the value of Skype. That charge, for what accountants call impairment, essentially acknowledged that eBay drastically overvalued the $2.6-billion Skype acquisition, completed in October, 2005. Including the Skype charges, eBay lost $936.6-million, or 69 cents per share in the third quarter. In the year-ago quarter, the online auction company earned $280.9-million, or 20 cents. EBAY (Nasdaq) rose $2 to $40.60.
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