Shares of Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) rose 45.4% in the first half of 2018, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. The e-commerce and cloud computing giant anchored these soaring gains on two fantastic earnings reports.
Amazon more than doubled Wall Street's earnings estimates in both February's fourth-quarter report and April's first-quarter update. The company also crushed analysts' revenue targets in both of these reports. Along the way, Amazon absorbed some tax-related criticism through a handful of Trump tweets, sending share prices lower in late March as investors feared some sort of financial follow-up to the written attacks.
There have been no real-world consequences of Trump's angry tweets so far. Amazon shares bounced back quickly, gaining a market-beating 27% since the deepest discounts of early April.
The Amazon juggernaut is not exactly unstoppable (witness, for example, the uninspiring state of its Amazon Prime Video service), but the company that Jeff Bezos built is certainly doing a lot of things right. The massive but low-margin e-commerce operation plus the stupendously profitable Amazon Web Services platform form a deadly one-two punch that most of its rivals just can't handle.