Is Facebook Inc (FB) About to Take a Page from Uber With New Ride-Sharing Feature?

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Uber has become quite a successful alternative to traditional taxi cabs, and Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) apparently is taking note. In a patent application that was published today, the company apparently wants to help their users find carpooling partners. The patent details show a system that allows users to select an event, how many passengers they can fit in their vehicle, and who can see the ride invitation (friends, friends of friends, etc).

The feature would then gather data on all those who are sharing the ride and then create a detailed map aiding in making the pickup process much easier and more time efficient. This might just be the start of what could be a challenge to Uber. CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently discussed a move that allows Facebook Messenger users to order an Uber ride via the application, hinting that this was just the beginning of a “transportation platform” test. It will definitely be interesting to follow this and see if Facebook does indeed plan on branching this out further.

The stock is up 2.15% or $2.35 following the news, hitting $111.46 per share. About 15.44 million shares traded hands. FB has risen 22.79% since June 24, 2015 and is uptrending. It has outperformed the S&P500 by 33.00%.

From a total of 34 analysts covering Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) stock, 33 rate it a “Buy”, 1 a “Sell”, and 0 a “Hold”. This means that 97% of the ratings are positive. The highest target price is $160 while the lowest target price is $88. The mean of all analyst targets is $123.94 which is 11.20% above today’s ($111.46) stock price. Facebook was the topic of 63 analyst reports since July 21, 2015 according to the firm StockzIntelligence Inc. Stifel Nicolaus maintained shares on January 28 with a “Buy” rating. Morgan Stanley maintained shares with a”Overweight” rating and a $120 target share price in their report from a November 5. FBR Capital maintained FB stock in a recent report from January 28 with a “Outperform” rating. Credit Suisse maintained the rating on November 5. Credit Suisse has a “Outperform” rating and a $135 price target on shares. Finally, Argus Research maintained the stock with a “Buy” rating in a report they issued on a November 6.

The institutional sentiment increased to 1.73 in Q2 2015. It’s up 0.01, from 1.72 in 2015Q2. The ratio improved, as 69 funds sold all their Facebook Inc shares they owned while 375 reduced their positions. 126 funds bought stakes while 643 increased their total positions. Institutions now own 1.55 billion shares which is 2.48% more than the previous share count of 1.51 billion in 2015Q2.

Millennium Tvp Management Co. Llc holds 52.76% of its total portfolio in Facebook Inc, equating to 639,552 shares. Parametric Risk Advisors Llc owns 7.97 million shares representing 46.51% of their total US portfolio. Moreover, Sc Us (Ttgp) Ltd. has 41.15% of their total portfolio invested in the company, equating to 1.04 million shares. The California-based Meritech Capital Associates Iii L.L.C. has a total of 37.81% of their portfolio invested in the stock. Duquesne Family Office Llc, a New York-based fund reported 4.09 million shares owned.

Since February 25, 2015, the stock had 0 insider purchases, and 36 sales for a total of $168.47 million in net activity. Athwal Jas sold 30,000 shares worth $3.06M. Stretch Colin sold 1,000 shares worth $98,710. Cox Christopher K sold 5,778 shares worth $561,622. Schroepfer Michael Todd sold 31,283 shares worth $3.00 million. The insider Fischer David B. sold 15,000 shares worth $1.43M.

Facebook, Inc. is a social networking company. The company has a market cap of $309.43 billion. The Firm is engaged in developing products that enables users to connect and share through mobile devices and personal computers. It has 86.66 P/E ratio. It offers various services focused on people, marketers and developers.

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