Facebook: COVID-19 Impact on FB Usage vs Ad Revenue

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Yesterday after the close, FB published a blog post saying: "Despite an increase in engagement on some platforms, in places hit hardest by the virus,” FB is seeing a weakening in its ads business in countries taking actions to reduce the spread of the COVID-19. (FB's full blog post is below.) We had already lowered our FY20 FB estimates, but we now lower our FY21 estimates as well. FB data points help answer a key question facing many ad-driven businesses during COVID-19. That is, whether added engagement (time spent viewing) will be offset by a sharp advertising demand downdraft from large categories of digital advertising such as travel (6%-8%), entertainment (5%), small offline retailers and consumer products companies. Yesterday, FB, Twitter and Comcast each disclosed data points that address this 1H20 economic tug-of-war.

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