Exceeding expectations.

Amazon first-quarter earnings have exceeded expectations rising 23% to US$35.7 billion while its cloud service platform, Amazon Web Services increased 43% to US$3.6 billion for the quarter. Net income stood at US$724 million for the quarter.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq index rose in response to the earnings hike last week with gains also coming from PayPal and Google parent, Alphabet.  US businesses are expected to benefit from a significant cut in corporate tax announced by the Trump administration although Congress is still to approve the proposal.

According to a report from Thomson Reuters, overall profits of the S&P 500 companies are estimated to have risen 12.4% in the first quarter, the most since 2011.

As the world’s biggest online retailer prepares to ‘set up shop’ in Australia, Amazon recently launched a banner on on its Australian website, calling for businesses to sign up and learn how to start selling to millions of Australian consumers.