Mark Zuckerberg could see $US24 billion ($33.6 billion) erased from his personal fortune on Thursday, among the biggest one-day drops in wealth ever, after Meta Platforms’s fourth-quarter earnings missed estimates.
Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, reported no growth in monthly Facebook users in the fourth quarter relative to the prior period, raising questions about the company’s future growth.
Meta’s share price was down more than 20 per cent in after-hours trading on Wall Street after the earnings update.
Mark Zuckerberg’s big bet on the metaverse is starting to bite.
Should that move hold, it would leave Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive officer, with a net worth of about $US97 billion, down from $US120.6 billion as of market close on Wednesday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. It would push him outside the list of the Top 10 wealthiest people in the world for the first time since July 2015.
A one-day wealth decline of $US24 billion would rank among the biggest ever, only rivalled by the volatile swings in Elon Musk’s fortune.
The world’s richest person lost $US35 billion in a day in November as Tesla shares fell following a Twitter poll in which Musk asked voters if he should sell 10 per cent of his stake in the company. His net worth also plunged $US25.8 billion last week.
For Meta, the disappointing earnings add to its challenges. It’s in the middle of a number of regulatory fights and also looking to justify its strategic shift to bet on an immersive internet known as the metaverse.
Meanwhile, other platforms like TikTok and YouTube are gaining ground with younger users.
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