Facebook’s Buying Spree: Why it Spent $25B on 14 Companies
Like it or not, Facebook is now a titan from almost every angle. With over 1 billion users, almost $8 billion of revenue and $1.5 billion in net income, the company has cash to burn.
The company is also not shy about snatching up talent for its future ambitions. In the last few years, Facebook has made 14 big acquisitions, and spent over $25B on them.
One area Facebook sees a lot of traction in is messaging. The acquisition of WhatsApp in February has certainly led to some additional expertise in this area, and the company recently announced that their new Facebook Messenger service reaches 500 million people.
The recent massive numbers coming out of the tech space have led some investors and venture capitalists to feel that tech stocks – particularly social media stocks – are overvalued. As Clem Chambers of Forbes wrote in July: “So what about Facebook? A near 100 P/E?? An approximately 20 times market cap to sales?? I’m rounding these numbers because to think Facebook is not massively overvalued needs magical thinking not math. Will it go up from here? Why not?”
Original graphic from: Who is Hosting This?
Charted: What are Retail Investors Interested in Buying in 2023?
What key themes and strategies are retail investors looking at for the rest of 2023? Preview: AI is a popular choice.
Charted: Retail Investors’ Top Picks for 2023
U.S. retail investors, enticed by a brief pause in the interest rate cycle, came roaring back in the early summer. But what are their investment priorities for the second half of 2023?
We visualized the data from Public’s 2023 Retail Investor Report, which surveyed 1,005 retail investors on their platform, asking “which investment strategy or themes are you interested in as part of your overall investment strategy?”
Survey respondents ticked all the options that applied to them, thus their response percentages do not sum to 100%.
Where Are Retail Investors Putting Their Money?
By far the most popular strategy for retail investors is dividend investing with 50% of the respondents selecting it as something they’re interested in.
Dividends can help supplement incomes and come with tax benefits (especially for lower income investors or if the dividend is paid out into a tax-deferred account), and can be a popular choice during more inflationary times.
|Investment Strategy||Percent of Respondents|
|Total Stock Market Index||36%|
|Gold & Precious Metals||23%|
Meanwhile, the hype around AI hasn’t faded, with 36% of the respondents saying they’d be interested in investing in the theme—including juggernaut chipmaker Nvidia. This is tied for second place with Total Stock Market Index investing.
Treasury Bills (30%) represent the safety anchoring of the portfolio but the ongoing climate crisis is also on investors’ minds with Renewable Energy (33%) and EVs (27%) scoring fairly high on the interest list.
Commodities and Inflation-Protection stocks on the other hand have fallen out of favor.
Come on Barbie, Let’s Go Party…
Another interesting takeaway pulled from the survey is how conversations about prevailing companies—or the buzz around them—are influencing trades. The platform found that public investors in Mattel increased 6.6 times after the success of the ‘Barbie’ movie.
Bud Light also saw a 1.5x increase in retail investors, despite receiving negative attention from their fans after the company did a beer promotion campaign with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
Given the origin story of a large chunk of American retail investors revolves around GameStop and AMC, these insights aren’t new, but they do reveal a persisting trend.
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