Facebook Woos Back Wall Street's Love With Mobile
Wall Street seems to like Facebook again for the same reason it use to hate it. That reason can be summed up in one word: mobile.
The social network's stock is having its biggest single-day surge since the company went public in May. Facebook'sshares were up more than 20 percent around midday Wednesday, trading at about $23.61, and the company was the top gainer on the Nasdaq.
Multiple brokerage firms raised their price target for the social media company Tuesday after it reported a 32 percent increase in revenue and a surprising increase in mobile advertising in its third quarter earnings.
"We definitely knew that the mobile side of the business was strong, but the magnitude of the growth and revenue was shocking I think to everybody," Jordan Rohan, managing director at Stifel Nicolaus, said Wednesday CNBC's Halftime Report.
"The fact that in May they had essentially zero mobile revenues and for the September quarter $150 million in revenues, that is something that I think caught everybody by surprise."
Facebook's revenue jumped to $1.26 billion from $954 million a year ago in the third quarter, a 32 percent increase. Advertising revenue increased by 36 percent to $1.09 billion, a 36 percent increase from a year ago. (Read More: Facebook May Get $1 Billion From Mobile.)
Barclays Capital, Jefferies, Macquarie Equities Research aised their price targets on the company, while Citigroup, BofA Merrill nd Stifel aised their rating to a buy.
Mobile advertising concerns have weighed heavily on Facebook shares since the company's initial public offering in May when the stock sold for $38 per share. But the recent earnings report may be a sign that Facebook's mobile problem is a thing of the past, Rohan said.
"What's exciting about Facebook right now is we actually have now turned the corner. Six months ago mobile was the enemy at some level. Mobile was the force that would reduce monetization for the overall Facebook platform," Rohan said. "Now mobile...is actually a friend to Facebook."