Annual growth in Yahoo!'s group revenue lagged behind its main competitor in the search engine market during the third quarter of the year.

The company's earnings stood at $1.6 billion (£1.01 billion) between July and September, an increase of two per cent on the corresponding period of 2009.

By comparison, Google recorded 23 per cent year-on-year growth in its revenue during the third quarter, seeing it top $7.29 billion.

In a statement to investors, Yahoo! said it had delivered a "solid quarter" that had seen it complete the transition of natural search for its North American sites to Microsoft and start the transfer of pay per click services to adCenter.

This process is expected to be complete by the end of October.

According to the latest figures from comScore, Yahoo! sites handled 2.68 billion queries from US internet users during September.

This compares to the 10.59 billion searches processed by Google.

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