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Google's parent company reported fourth-quarter earnings yesterday that topped expectations across the board. But the dual threats of rising costs and growing competition were enough to sink shares about 3% after hours. Revenue surged about 21% annually to $39.3 billion—and given that it represents such a giant portion of sales, we're not surprised that advertising revenue also grew 20% to $32.6 billion. But it didn't come cheap. Traffic acquisition costs (aka the fees Alphabet pays to other companies to be their default search engine) totaled $7.44 billion, up 15%. And capital expenditures came in around $7 billion for Q4, up 80%. Plus, cost per click on Alphabet properties (or what the company charges advertisers) fell 29%. Remember, Alphabet's been navigating an increasingly competitive digital ad landscape. Does anyone know who invited Bezos? Bottom line: That drop in advertising costs could spook investors worried Alphabet's losing its pricing power gusto. Still, it was a (mostly) satisfying ending to a string of (mostly) impressive Big Tech earnings. via Morning Brew