It was down and down for Amazon with its Q3 results today, when the online retailer reported that it missed estimates for sales and earnings. Amazon reported $13.18 billion in revenue for Q3, up 27% from a year ago but lighter than the $13.93 billion expectation. Excluding the 37 cents-a-share loss related to the company’s investment in locally based discount site LivingSocial, Amazon lost 23 cents a share in the quarter, much worse than the consensus expectation of an 8 cent loss. Shares in the online and cloud giant fell as much as 9% in volatile after-hours trading — it currently sits at around -3% at $220.70 a share.

Amazon said in its earnings statement it had an operating loss of $28 million, with net income standing at a loss of $274 million, or 60 cents a share, in the quarter. Of that loss, $169 million came from Amazon’s investment in LivingSocial. In terms of guidance for Q4, Amazon was also down from the $22.82 billion estimates. “Net sales are expected to be between $20.25 billion and $22.75 billion, or to grow between 16% and 31% compared with fourth-quarter 2011,” the company said. In a company statement, CEO Jeff Bezos decided to concentrate on the company’s Kindle tablets success rather than the lower-than-expected earnings and sales. “Our approach is to work hard to charge less. Sell devices near break even and you can pack a lot of sophisticated hardware into a very low price point,” the company founder said.

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