The company's previous worst single-day performance was July 27, 2012, when the stock fell 11.7%.
But shares slumped seven percent in after-hours exchanges after hitting record levels in official trading, with the quarterly report largely weaker than had been expected. Facebook's results prompted selling in other Nasdaq listings, including media and advertising rivals Amazon.com Inc, Netflix Inc and Alphabet Inc. The company's sales grew at a 42% clip in the second quarter, so the forecast implies that its growth rate for the rest of the year will be 35% or less.
Despite the rocky quarter, Facebook shares had hit an all-time high before Wednesday's earnings report and its quarterly revenue was still up 42 percent from this time a year ago. "It's the F in FAANG, but what's to say that, 10 years from now, Facebook isn't the next Myspace and something else has taken its place?"
A total of $128 billion was wiped off Facebook's value in just two hours following the second quarter briefing, the first since the Cambridge Analytica scandal and new European Union data rules came into effect. The new privacy law forced several changes to Facebook's privacy terms and sign-up process, leading a minority of users to opt for non-personalised ads, which tend to generate less revenue. But as I've said on past calls, we're investing so much in security that it will significantly impact our profitability. The company's user base flatlined in its biggest market, the US and Canada, at 185 million daily users, while declining 1 per cent in Europe to 279 million daily users.
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The fleeing of one million users is but a drop in the ocean to Facebook, which now has over 2.2 billion active monthly over-sharers on its website. Commercialisation of those apps is nascent. That push, along with advertising, is behind the 47% explosion in the employee ranks between last year's second quarter and the 2018 period.
Facebook has faced dozens of lawsuits over its handling of user data in a scandal also concerning the United Kingdom firm Cambridge Analytica. "Facebook's Chief Financial Officer warned that revenue growth would "decline by high single-digit percentages" until 2019".
Siva Vaidhyanathan, a media studies professor at the University of Virginia and author of the new book, "Antisocial Media: How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy", dismissed the significance of the stock plunge.
Analysts sounded notes of concern about the earnings report. The company also reported a second-quarter profit of $2.5 billion (roughly Rs. 17,100 crores), its largest ever.