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Why Meta Platforms Stock Is Down on Monday

By Daniel Sparks – Dec 20, 2021 at 1:16PM

Key Points

  • On a tough day in the stock market generally, Meta Platforms' share price is also dropping.
  • It's trading at just 23 times earnings -- a conservative valuation that may attract some opportunistic investors.

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The company behind Facebook continues to trade at a conservative valuation.

What happened

Shares of Meta Platforms (META -1.54%) -- until recently known as Facebook -- slipped by as much as 3.2% Monday morning. As of noon ET, the stock was down by 2.8%.

The social network company was likely being pulled along by a downdraft in the overall market -- particularly for tech stocks.

A chart showing a stock price declining.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Major Wall Street indices dipped on Monday as the sell-off that began last week continued. That sell-off appeared to have been triggered largely by the Federal Reserve's recent commentary regarding its expectations for raising benchmark interest rates in 2023. In addition, the rapid spread of the omicron COVID-19 variant across the U.S. and worldwide even as a delta-driven surge is already underway may be spooking some investors.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite was down by more than 1.6% as of this writing -- a slightly larger decline than the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

Meta may also be slipping Monday because investment research firm Loop Capital cut its price target on the stock from $420 to $380. That revised price target, though, is more than 17% higher than where the stock was trading at as of midday.

The tech stock has now fallen by more than 11% over the past three months.

Now what

Some may view the recent pressure on Meta stock as creating a good buying opportunity. The company's price-to-earnings ratio of 23 is extremely conservative considering its strong top- and bottom-line growth in 2021, as well as analysts' expectations for robust annualized earnings growth rates in the double-digit percentages over the next five years. 

Randi Zuckerberg, a former director of market development and spokeswoman for Facebook and sister to Meta Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns and recommends Meta Platforms, Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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