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Even More 1999 Than I Thought

In a post Monday, I described the over-the-top Google party at the World Economic Forum in Davos, and noted that Google would post fourth-quarter earnings after the closing bell Tuesday. Well, post they did—an 82% increase in profits. Pretty nifty. Unfortunately, that was still well short of Wall Street forecasts, which is why the stock fell as much as 19% in after-hours trading. So the old 1999 dot-com rule of thumb apparently still applies: The lavishness of your party is in inverse proportion to the lushness of your financial performance. The difference this time around, of course, is that there is some actual financial performance. An 82% profit jump is nothing to sneeze at.