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The rate of Yahoo!'s net income growth slowed in the first three months of 2006. Compared to Q1 2005, Yahoo! recorded 33 per cent higher revenues after traffic acquisition costs (TAC) are deducted, and operating income 26 per cent higher year-on year.

However, the company's revenue for the quarter was only slightly up sequentially to $1.09bn, from $1.07bn in Q4 2005, ex-TAC. Profits from international operations were becalmed, compared to the last three months of 2005. Overall, net income was $160m. Executives said an accounting change related to stock options cost the company $57m in profits.

Operating cash flow dipped sequentially to $435m, down from $459m, and average revenue per user also fell slightly quarter-on-quarter, although both are up on a year ago.

Yahoo! ended the quarter with over 10,000 employees, 2,400 more than a year ago.

Yahoo! is spending $750m of its $3.83bn cash hoard on buying back stock. The company offered a revenue outlook in the range of $1.08bn to $1.16bn for Q2. ®

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