Bulls on Meta Stock Have One Big Problem: Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg built Meta Platforms Inc. into one of the biggest companies in the world, but some investors now see him as an obstacle to the stock recovering from a historic selloff.

The Facebook parent has tumbled 72% this year, with last week’s earnings pushing the shares to their lowest since 2016. The biggest weight on the stock: Meta is spending billions of dollars to develop the metaverse, an immersive virtual world that the chief executive officer has long believed represents the future of computing.

Shares fell 4.4% on Monday, participating in a broad decline for technology and internet stocks. The Nasdaq 100 Index fell 1.5%.

The strategy is curbing earnings even as the company acknowledges it’s unlikely to deliver significant revenue for years. While investors may long for Meta to renew its focus on selling ads to its billions of social-media users, the company’s structure gives Zuckerberg total control, so there’s little they can do but what they’ve already been doing: sell.

“He’s tone deaf to what the owners of the company want, outside of himself,” said David Katz, chief investment officer at Matrix Asset Advisors. “The stock could double in a year with better management, with management that is more focused on shareholders.”