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How Facebook’s $151 billion rout could rewrite history books

Facebook on Wednesday reported second-quarter sales and user growth that fell short of analysts’ projections. And the company told Wall Street the numbers won’t get any better this year.

business Updated: Jul 26, 2018 10:32 IST
Facebook,Social media,Wall street
Monitors displays the Facebook, Inc. stock during morning trading at the NASDAQ Marketsite in New York, US. Facebook shares tumbled by more than 20 per cent on Wednesday after the social media network’s revenue and user growth fell short of investor expectations.(Reuters File Photo )

Facebook Inc. has racked up plenty of milestones in its pioneering journey. Now the social-media giant is poised to add one it would doubtless rather avoid: the biggest stock-market wipeout in American history.

That could happen Thursday if the 24% tumble in Facebook’s stock in after-hours trading is replicated in the regular New York session. Its market capitalization plummeted late Wednesday, at one point by about $151 billion, as sales and user growth disappointed investors. A move of that magnitude on Thursday would likely be the largest ever loss of value in one day for a US-traded company.

The following is a look at some of history’s other notable one-day share slams, considering American firms that were worth at least $150 billion in any year over the past decade.

Back in the depths of the tech bust, Intel Corp. lost about $91 billion on one September day in 2000. Exxon Mobil Corp., already reeling from the financial crisis and recession in October 2008, lost $53 billion one wretched Wednesday that month. And the slowest profit growth at Apple Inc. in 10 years triggered a loss of almost $60 billion on January 24, 2013.

Facebook ended the after-hours session down 20 percent at $173.50, a loss of about $126 billion in market cap, having declined as much as 24 percent earlier.

First Published: Jul 26, 2018 10:05 IST