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Meta’s market value plunges by $230 billion in one day

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It’s the largest single-day loss ever by a US company

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The price of shares in Meta — the parent company of Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, and Meta Quest (fka Oculus) — dropped more than 25 percent at the start of trading on Thursday, after it revealed its first-ever sequential decline in Facebook’s daily active users. By the time the markets closed, the company had seen $230 billion in market value wiped out, the biggest one-day loss ever by a US company.

The company has struggled with waning relevance among young people as CEO Mark Zuckerberg refocuses its aim toward “metaverse” plans. It was also hit hard by changes Apple made to its ad-privacy policy; CFO David Wehner said Wednesday that Meta would likely lose more than $10 billion in sales as a result of the new iOS rules, which limit customer tracking.

Meta wasn’t the only company having a rough Thursday; the entire Nasdaq exchange was off by nearly 2 percent by midday, and rivals Snap, and Twitter, which are both listed on the New York Stock Exchange were also trading lower.

Of course, Meta is still worth some $671 billion and reported over $40 billion in profit for 2021, despite the “headwinds” cited frequently on a call with investors to discuss the results. That’s a slightly better position than it was after its 2012 “clusterfuck” of an IPO when it took an entire year before the company’s stock rebounded to match the original offering price.

Update February 3rd 4:42PM ET: Added latest information after stock markets closed