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Average revenue per United States and Canadian user grew 6.7% in third quarter compared with the same period past year.

Total expenses in the third quarter surged to almost $8 billion, up 53% compared with a year ago.

While the company's daily active user count averaged out at around 1.49 billion in September, an increase 9% over last year's results, the firm's daily averages in the US and Canada have remained flat at 185 million users since the first quarter of 2018. While previous earnings calls have typically involved cheerleading rhetoric about Facebook's numerous strengths, Zuckerberg was equally clear this time in outlining the challenges the company faces.

Facebook Inc. (FB) shares got a boost on Wednesday after the social media giant posted its most recent quarterly earnings report. In the European Union over the third quarter, Facebook lost 1 million daily users, partly because of tough new data privacy regulations that were put into place, said Dave Wehner, the company's chief financial officer.

Facebook said sales rose by 33% in the third quarter to $13.7bn (£10.7bn), however they narrowly missed forecasts. That is partly because tools to make ads for "Stories" are not fully developed yet, and it is easy for users to ignore ads on the service or skip the service altogether, analysts said. Emerging businesses Instagram and WhatsApp are seen as hopes for picking up the slack from flattening usage of the main Facebook app. "Facebook also managed to eke out a small usage gain in the U.S. and Canada". In Europe, DAUs ticked down quarter-over-quarter from 279 million to 278 million.

"Monetization of core Facebook and Instagram assets still has material upside potential and Messenger and WhatsApp are beginning early stages of monetization", wrote RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Mahaney.

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A memorial outside the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh , where a gunman killed 11 people on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018. They were greeted by Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, who led them inside the temple where they lighted candles for the victims.

Facebook earlier this year said revenue growth rates would decline in the third and fourth quarters, sending shares plummeting. However, revenue was slightly lower than expected, topping off at $13.73 billion, compared to estimates of $13.78 billion.

Zuckerberg said Facebook is up against sophisticated adversaries who continue to evolve.

A few financial analysts are concerned that the company's operational problems are so vast that costs will continue to rise out of sync with revenue.

"The fact that problems keep emerging reinforces our view that the company is not as in control of its business as it needs to be", Pivotal Research senior analyst Brian Wieser told clients in an email this month.

Shares of Facebook traded up about 3% after updating its forecast.