SunTrust Robinson Reaffirms Their Buy Rating on Facebook (FB)

By Carrie Williams

SunTrust Robinson analyst Youssef Squali maintained a Buy rating on Facebook (FBResearch Report) yesterday and set a price target of $210. The company’s shares closed on Friday at $166.69.

Squali commented:

“We were not surprised by the content or timing of this open letter since his commentary echoes the evolution of his position on these issues at a crucial time when data breaches and harmful content continue to permeate the Internet unabated. This position is also being expressed during a period of heated electoral politics when regulators from the US to India are sounding the alarm on the power Facebook wields over speech, and are calling for more oversight. 2. We believe Zuckerberg did a 180-degree turn, moving from advocating self- regulation for years, believing the industry can self-police, to now asking for government regulation. Facebook has been trying to lead the narrative around what needs to be done industry-wide to address these issues. It seems that the company now views regulators setting “rules of the road” for the industry as crucial.”

According to TipRanks.com, Squali is a top 100 analyst with an average return of 22.7% and a 70.0% success rate. Squali covers the Technology sector, focusing on stocks such as Match Group Inc, Trade Desk Inc, and Cardlytics Inc.

The word on The Street in general, suggests a Strong Buy analyst consensus rating for Facebook with a $193.94 average price target, implying a 16.3% upside from current levels. In a report issued on March 18, Oppenheimer also assigned a Buy rating to the stock with a $195 price target.

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Based on Facebook’s latest earnings release for the quarter ending December 31, the company reported a quarterly revenue of $16.91 billion and net profit of $6.88 billion. In comparison, last year the company earned revenue of $11.97 billion and had a net profit of $4.99 billion.

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