By Daniel Hunter

eBay, the online auction site and retailer, have announced an increase in their first quarter profits for 2012.

The company said that their profit was $725 million (£453 million), up from $619 million a year earlier.

Online payments with Paypal, which accounted for nearly 40% of total revenues, helped boost an already strong performance.

"We believe that innovation in retail today is technology driven, and consumers are embracing smarter, easier, better ways to shop," chief executive, John Donahoe, said.

"We are enabling commerce in this new retail environment, supporting and partnering with sellers of all sizes and giving consumers worldwide the ability to shop anytime, anywhere, for whatever they want."

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