Facebook shares rebound on Wednesday, company to provide free ads to WHO as it battles misinformation

In a post, Facebook Inc’s (FB) Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg said that the social media company would provide free advertisements to the World Health Organization (WHO) in an attempt to combat coronavirus misinformation.

The CEO said that users searching for publications on Facebook concerning the coronavirus would now be able to view a pop-up that will direct them to the WHO or local health authority for the most actual information.

Facebook shares closed higher for the fourth time in the past ten trading sessions on NASDAQ on Wednesday. It has also been the sharpest single-session gain since June 17th 2019. The stock went up 3.17% ($5.90) to $191.79, after touching an intraday low at $186.47 and an intraday high at $191.79.

Shares of Facebook Inc have retreated 6.56% so far in 2020 compared with a 3.12% loss for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2019, Facebook Inc’s stock went up 56.57%, thus, it outperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 28.88% gain.

“We’re giving the WHO as many free ads as they need for their coronavirus response along with other in-kind support,” Mark Zuckerberg said in the Facebook post.

“We’ll also give support and millions more in ad credits to other organizations too and we’ll be working closely with global health experts to provide additional help if needed,” he added.

“We’re also focused on stopping hoaxes and harmful misinformation. It’s important that everyone has a place to share their experiences and talk about the outbreak, but as our community standards make clear, it’s not okay to share something that puts people in danger,” Zuckerberg wrote.

Analyst stock price forecast and recommendation

According to CNN Money, the 45 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Facebook Inc’s stock price, have a median target of $250.00, with a high estimate of $300.00 and a low estimate of $178.00. The median estimate represents a 30.35% upside compared to the closing price of $191.79 on March 4th.

The same media also reported that at least 39 out of 50 surveyed investment analysts had rated Facebook Inc’s stock as “Buy”, while 6 – as “Hold”. On the other hand, 2 analysts had recommended selling the stock.

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