Whether you love eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) or hate it, the auction house extraordinaire is an interesting company to follow. If it's not letting enterprising folks offer up their foreheads for advertising, it's auctioning off a grilled cheese sandwich with the purported image of the Virgin Mary to the highest bidder (try $28,000!). And, for investors who are used to it always exceeding expectations, sometimes even eBay has to let them down gently.

Earlier this week, eBay's CEO Meg Whitman sat down with our own David Gardner for a Motley Fool Radio Show interview. David was quick to jump into the topic of eBay's recent quarterly report and the stock market's reaction to it.

David Gardner: Meg, investors weren't too keen on your fourth-quarter report, particularly the slower-than-expected growth that eBay is now predicting for this year, 2005. Now, I'm a shareholder, so I have seen my shares drop, too, around 30% this year. Do you think the market's expectations for eBay were realistic?

Meg Whitman: Well, you know, David, what we try to do is actually manage the company, and the stock price will be what it will be. We felt like we had a good fourth quarter: 44% revenue growth on now a very large base, for example, and we are optimistic about 2005. We are making some investments in some new areas, like China and our new PayPal subsidiary, but generally speaking, I feel very, very good about the business and about the plans that we laid out. So the stock market will kind of do what it does.

David Gardner: Knowing what you knew, looking at the results in 2005, were you surprised by the market's reaction, or have you been around the block enough times now to say they may not like this, but hey, that is just the way we are managing this business this year?

Meg Whitman: Well, you know, usually after our earnings release, the stock either goes up or down. It is hard to predict which way it will go. So sometimes it just is unpredictable, so I couldn't say that I was surprised. I think that the market reacted the way the market did, and we will forge on to deliver a great 2005.

Want to hear the rest of the interview? Tune in to The Motley Fool Radio Show on NPR this weekend. Check out the show's website for stations in your area.

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