The Meta group, formerly Facebook, plunges 25% in the stock market after disappointing results

New blow for the Internet giant. Shares of Meta (Facebook) plunged 25% on Wall Street on Thursday after disappointing results, potentially wiping out nearly $200 billion in capitalization from Mark Zuckerberg’s group.

At 2:35 p.m. GMT (3:35 p.m. in Paris), the title of Meta Platforms, parent company of Facebook, tumbled 25.81% to 239.56 dollars, dragging the Nasdaq index (-2.29%) into its fall.

The social networking giant, which lost users in North America for the first time in its history, announced on Wednesday, after the closing, a lower profit in the fourth quarter and an outlook for slower growth in the first.

As of December 31, 2021, 2.8 billion people visited one of its four services (Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp) at least once a day and 3.6 billion at least once a month. Figures up slightly over one year, but almost equivalent to those of the third quarter.

Competition with TikTok?

The original social network, Facebook, has lost around 1 million active daily users in three months (1.929 billion at the end of December).

Dave Weiner, the group’s chief financial officer, cited an unfavorable comparison with previous months, when the resurgence of Covid in Asia would have accelerated the adoption of the service. “We also believe competing platforms are hurting our growth, especially with younger audiences,” he said on a conference call for analysts.

“People have a lot of choices about how they want to spend their time. And apps like TikTok are growing very quickly,” insisted Mark Zuckerberg, founder and boss of Meta. The leaders of the company have also mentioned other networks on several occasions, while they face numerous investigations and complaints for abuse of dominant position.

Other companies affected

On the financial side, Meta posted revenue of $33.67 billion, in line with its forecast, but it generated “only” $10.3 billion in net profit in the fourth quarter, or 8% less than last year.

Meta has attracted with it the other listed social networks, such as Twitter (-6.08%) or Snap (-18.93%), but also more broadly the photo-sharing site Pinterest (-8.45%), and other stars of the new digital economy, such as Shopify (-5.27%) or Block (ex-Square, -6.37%).

Also targeted by investors, Spotify (-14.79% to 163.54 dollars), guilty of not having given forecasts for the whole of 2022, as well as of posting slow growth.

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