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Facebook Has Been Lambasted by Critics, But Its Fundamentals Are Still Strong

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According to the news pages, Facebook (NASDAQ: FB ) is having a tough year.

Founder Mark Zuckerberg got hauled before Congress to talk about the company's dissemination of what some dismissed as "fake news" during the 2016 presidential campaign. Zuckerberg had to admit that millions of Facebook users had their data harvested by a company called Cambridge Analytica. The European Union is also investigating the company's activities.

But the business pages tell a different story. For all its public travails, Facebook stock is trading somewhat higher today than it was in January. The tech giant's fundamentals seem to be holding up well, for now.

While Twitter (NYSE: TWTR ) may get more publicity, Facebook remains the key social network for many millions of users all around the world, the place to tell your friends about engagements, new babies or just something that happened in everyday life. About 40% of the people on Earth now use either Facebook or one of its affiliated networks.

Facebook also owns Instagram, which is wildly popular with today's teenagers and millennials. Instagram just introduced a new video feature that is part of an ongoing strategy to compete more directly against YouTube, owned by rival tech giant Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL , NASDAQ: GOOG ).

This new Instagram feature, known as IGTV, will allow users to upload videos of up to one hour in length. That is a huge upgrade from the original limit of one minute.

Instagram's popularity shows no signs of cooling. It also recently announced that its service has hit 1 billion monthly active users, a 25% increase in less than 12 months. Twitter can boast only about 350 million active users, even if one of them is President Trump.

Many thought that Zuckerberg was taking a big risk when Facebook purchased Instagram for $1 billion back in 2012. Today it looks like a bargain.

Not everything is rosy for Zuckerberg and his team. Six prominent shareholders, who together control about $3 billion worth of shares, have reportedly hatched a scheme to wrest control of the company away from the current top brass.

These individuals seem to be more motivated by politics than by an assessment of the company's financials. One of them is Scott Stringer, New York City's comptroller. Many Democrats still blame Facebook for helping Trump get elected.

Bottom Line on Facebook Stock

But as long as the company keeps making money, these dissidents may find it hard to gain more support. Facebook's revenue has grown steadily and came in around $12 billion in the first quarter of 2018.

The stock is up about 140% during the past three years, which may sound like it is ready for a correction. But comparable tech giants have done even better. Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN ), for example, is up almost 300 percent during the same period.

While the company as a whole may continue to face political turmoil, its underlying strengths should ensure continuing gains for the stock.

The author does not own any of the stocks discussed in this article.

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The post Facebook Has Been Lambasted by Critics, But Its Fundamentals Are Still Strong appeared first on InvestorPlace .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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