Facebook parent company Meta (FB) took a shellacking Thursday morning following its Wednesday Q4 earnings results, amid a miss on earnings per share and a dreadful outlook for Q1.
Investors fled the company’s stock Thursday, sending it plummeting more than 25% to a 52-week low of $244.75.
In a statement, CFO David Wehner pointed to Apple’s (AAPL) iOS privacy changes, inflation, and exchange rates as the biggest headwinds for the company moving forward.
But that’s not the only reason for the crash. Deep in Meta’s earnings slides, the company revealed that its user growth has slowed to a little more than a trickle. And in the case of daily active Facebook users in particular, the company actually lost 1 million users.
Facebook parent Meta’s stock is sinking following its Q4 earnings report. (Image: Yahoo Finance)
Meta’s seeming cure for the problem? Investing in the metaverse, where it hopes to become the go-to company for interconnected digital worlds. But that’ll take years to come to fruition, and investors may not wait that long.
Apple’s iOS privacy changes will hurt Meta through 2022
During Meta’s earnings call, both CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg pointed to Apple’s App Tracking Transparency feature, introduced in April 2021, as the chief problem facing the company’s ads business.
App Tracking Technology asks users if they want their apps to have the ability to track their activity across the web. Turning the feature off keeps company’s like Meta from being able to learn more about its users, which impacts ad targeting.
Without accurate ad targeting, advertisers will shift away from services like Meta and spend their advertising budgets on other platforms or services.
“Apple created two challenges for advertisers,” Sandberg explained. “One is that the accuracy of our ads targeting decreased, which increases the cost of driving outcomes. The other is that measuring those outcomes became more difficult.”
Wehner laid out the problem in starker terms saying the company will miss out on $10 billion due to iOS’s privacy…