Facebook Inc(NASDAQ:FB) Seeks Review of WhatsApp Deal from EU Regulators

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Facebook Inc(NASDAQ:FB) has asked antitrust regulators in the European Union to review its acquisition of mobile messaging service WhatsApp, according to several media reports. Consolidating the review could prove stock-supportive for the social media giant as it may mean fewer hurdles for the acquisition. So far Wednesday, FB is trading slightly lower.

European telecom companies have raised concerns that the acquisition would give Facebook a dominant position in the instant messaging market in Europe. WhatsApp is an alternative service to text and picture messaging. An EU review of the $19-billion takeover of WhatsApp would mean there would only be one hearing that will cover the 28 nations, instead of several national antitrust probes. The acquisition has already been approved in the U.S. by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

Analysts have a consensus price target of $73.80 on Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) which indicates a 16% upside. The consensus rating of the stock is a BUY with a score of 2.82. There are currently 7 Hold Ratings and 31 Buy ratings on the stock.

A recent analyst action consisted of Evercore Partners upgrading the stock from Equal Weight to Overweight and boosting their price target from $69 to $75 on May 22nd. Facebook (FB) closed the previous trading session at $63.30 and has a 50-day moving average of $59.86 and a 200-day moving average of 59.06. The company has a market cap of $161 billion and has a current quarter EPS consensus estimate of $1.43.

 

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