Meta Soars by Most in Decade, Adding $100 Billion in Value

Author: Yuvi February 2, 2023 Meta Soars by Most in Decade, Adding $100 Billion in Value

Meta’s stock surged on Thursday after the company reported better-than-expected earnings, said it would buy back billions of dollars in its stock, and overcame a court challenge to its ambitions in the so-called metaverse.

Shares of the tech giant, the owner of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, climbed more than 20 percent, which would be its biggest daily gain in nearly 10 years. And it is a huge move for a company its size, adding some $100 billion in market value in a single day, or about as much as Citigroup’s entire market capitalization.

After ending last year with a loss of more than 60 percent, Meta’s stock is up more than 50 percent this year, as the mood among tech investors has brightened. The Nasdaq Composite, an index that includes many tech companies, including Meta, has risen nearly 20 percent this year.

Here is the latest on Meta:

The company’s earnings beat expectations, and it announced a big buyback plan. Its revenue in the final three months of last year, just over $32 billion, was down 4 percent from a year ago but ahead of analysts’ forecasts. On Wednesday, the company also said that first-quarter sales would be better than expected and announced $40 billion in share buybacks, after buying $28 billion of its own shares last year. Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive, declared 2023 would be a “year of efficiency” for the company.

Its virtual reality deal survived a legal challenge. On Wednesday, a federal judge rejected the Federal Trade Commission’s request to block Meta from spending $400 billion to acquire a virtual reality start-up called Within, representing a major legal victory for the company as it invests heavily in the metaverse, where users work, play and consume content through virtual and augmented reality. (Less happily for Meta, a month ago European regulators ruled that it had illegally forced users to effectively accept personalized ads, fining the company more than $400 million and potentially forcing it to make costly changes to its ad business in the European Union.)

Plenty of challenges to its business remain. Meta faces setbacks in digital advertising as clients rein in spending because of higher interest rates and inflation. The company is also fighting to retain users drawn to newer apps like TikTok, the short-form video app that Mr. Zuckerberg considers one of his most formidable rivals. The billions that Meta is spending pursuing its founder’s vision of the metaverse may not pay off.

Meta laid off more than 11,000 employees in November. The company reduced its work force by 13 percent in the round of layoffs, in what amounted to the most significant job cuts since its founding in 2004. Meta took a $4.2 billion restructuring charge for the fourth quarter, including costs for the early termination of office leases and severance for employees. The company expects another $1 billion in restructuring costs in 2023.

Author: Yuvi

My name is Yuvi, I work as Sub Editor at

2 February, 2023, 10:19 pm

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