Canada markets closed

Facebook's (FB) Focus on Local News to Aid Market Share

Zacks Equity Research

Facebook FB is set to expand its Today In feature for local news and information to more than 6,000 cities and towns across the United States.

Today In can be found within More menu on the social media giant’s flagship mobile applications for iOS and Android. Notably, the service is driven by AI and does not use human curators.

Per a Nieman Lab report, 59% of local news aggregated by Facebook on Today In covers critical information, especially stories on emergencies, transportation and health. This apart, 31% of the stories cover sports and 9% obituaries. Notably, political stories do not generate substantial local interest.

Users opting for the Today In service will receive real-time local news and announcements from non-profit organizations and public services directly in their mobile newsfeed. This also includes critical alerts like road closures, crime reports and election results.

Facebook, Inc. Price and Consensus

Facebook, Inc. Price and Consensus

Facebook, Inc. price-consensus-chart | Facebook, Inc. Quote

Facebook’s Local News Focus Increases Competitive Prowess

The rapid introduction of news services from tech giants like Facebook, Alphabet GOOGL division Google and Apple AAPL has intensified competition in the digital as well as traditional news market.

Per Reuters Digital News report 2019, overall weekly usage level of Google News has reached 15% in the United States, similar to Amazon’s AMZN Washington Post.

Moreover, the overall reach of Apple News is 10%. Notably, Apple News reaches 27% of iPhone users in the United States compared with 23% for Amazon’s Washington Post.

Facebook’s local news focus is likely to boost market share amid intensifying competition. Per a Market Watch report, currently 1.6 million people have activated Today In. The service was launched in 400 cities early last year. It receives news from about 1,200 local news outlets per week and aggregates them by area for users of the feature.

Facebook’s huge daily user base of 1.59 billion offers significant room for growth. Moreover, the company, which has been primarily blamed for the decline in newspaper and print media business, has lately been taking initiatives to support journalists. This includes investment of $300 million in news partnerships over the next three years.

Zacks Rank

Facebook currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Today's Best Stocks from Zacks

Would you like to see the updated picks from our best market-beating strategies? From 2017 through 2018, while the S&P 500 gained +15.8%, five of our screens returned +38.0%, +61.3%, +61.6%, +68.1%, and +98.3%.

This outperformance has not just been a recent phenomenon. From 2000 – 2018, while the S&P averaged +4.8% per year, our top strategies averaged up to +56.2% per year.

See their latest picks free >>

Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report, Inc. (AMZN) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Facebook, Inc. (FB) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
Apple Inc. (AAPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
To read this article on click here.
Zacks Investment Research