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Baidu Forecasts Sales Jump as Mobile Users Lure Advertising

Baidu Inc., the owner of China’s largest Internet search engine, forecast first-quarter sales that beat analysts’ estimates as advertisers boost spending to reach an increasing number of mobile users.

Revenue will be 9.24 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) to 9.52 billion yuan in the three months ended March, the Beijing-based company said yesterday. That is as much as 60 percent above the year earlier and compares with the 8.6 billion-yuan average of eight analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Baidu surged 7.7 percent in after-hours trade.