Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) released its earnings report for the three months ended September 30 this afternoon after the market close. The company showed earnings of $0.34 per share on revenue of $1.1 billion for the three month period. Yahoo shares have been relying on growth in China for some time and as that business appears to be coming to a close, investors are wondering what the future holds for Yahoo.

Yahoo

In the run up to the announcement of the company’s third quarter earnings, analysts following Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) were looking for earnings per share of 33 cents on revenue totaling $1.1 billion. In the same three months of 2012 the company earned 35 cents per share on revenue of $1.1 billion.

Yahoo and Alibaba

The Chinese internet company that Yahoo Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) partly owns, Alibaba.com Ltd. (OTCMKTS:ALBIY) (HKG:1688), is destined to go public at some point in the coming months. The massive growth in that company’s business has been responsible for much of the growth in Yahoo shares since the start of the year, but that firm will no longer be part of Yahoo after it goes public.

The deal will be a cash windfall for Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO), but the company has not revealed what it will spend that money on. Some analysts are hoping the company will decide to use all or most of the money for a massive share buyback, while others are hoping the company will invest in new acquisitions and developing its future business.

Nobody seems quite sure what the future for Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) is, and that makes it difficult for investors to look for investment of the Alibaba.com Ltd. (OTCMKTS:ALBIY) (HKG:1688) number in future endeavors.

Yahoo performance

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) stock has gained close to 70% since January 1. Investors have been impressed by the company’s ability to shore up losses in its core business, but the effect of the firm’s Asian business has been the major driver of its shares. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has promised a golden future at Yahoo to investors, but the company has not delivered anything like that so far.

In the month leading up to the release of this earnings report share in Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) gained just over 15%. Investors are optimistic about Yahoo, and particularly about the firm’s Asian business. Yahoo will discuss earnings in a call at 5 PM EST this afternoon.