Shares in Twitter lost altitude in pre-market deals on Thursday after it reported weaker than expected third quarter revenue and profits.

The social media platform said it encountered several barriers, including advertising problems, in the three months to September which took the gloss of its revenue performance.

It posted a figure of $827m (£640m)- a rise of 9% on the same period last year – which missed Wall Street estimates as did the number for net income, its main profit measure, which came in at $37m (£28m).

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 5: Twitter chief executive officer Jack Dorsey testifies during a House Committee on Energy and Commerce hearing about Twitter's transparency and accountability, on Capitol Hill, September 5, 2018 in Washington, DC. Earlier in the day, Dorsey faced questions from the Senate Intelligence Committee about how foreign operatives use their platforms in attempts to influence and manipulate public opinion. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Jack Dorsey is trying to make the platform more attractive to advertisers through efforts to target trolls and offensive content

Analysts had expected a figure above $161m.

The bright spot was growth in Twitter’s measure for active users which continued its surge since it abandoned reporting monthly active users.

Growth in the ‘monetisable daily active usage’ (mDAU), which takes in the number of users exposed to adverts on a daily basis, hit an average of 145 million. That is a 17% increase on the third quarter of 2018.

Twitter’s chief executive Jack Dorsey credited product improvements, including making the site easier to navigate and more proactively identifying abusive content for removal.

Shares – up 35% in the year to date – fell 13% in pre-market trading. They were down as much as 19% at $31.30 as markets opened on Thursday.

The company had previously warned that revenue would likely lag previous quarters as a consequence of older advertising formats being phased out.

But it also reported unexpected problems, such as bugs which impacted its ability to target ads and share data with partners.

It forecast revenues of between $940m and £1.01bn in the fourth quarter – lagging market expectations.

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