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Zuckerberg Surpasses Bill Gates In Wealth After Meta’s Historic $196 Billion Surge

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New Delhi: Ahead of its 20th anniversary, Meta approved an additional $50 billion for share repurchases and announced a quarterly dividend of 50 cents per share on Thursday.

Following this, the platform experienced a historic surge, adding $196 billion in stock market value the next day – the largest single-day gain ever recorded by a company on Wall Street.

This resulted in Meta’s stock soaring by 20.3%, marking its most substantial one-day percentage increase in a year and the third-largest since its 2012 debut. The company’s market value has now exceeded $1.22 trillion.

This significant surge brought Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg a paper windfall of $28 billion, contributing to his current net worth of $165 billion. This surpasses Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates in wealth.

As per CNBC, Zuckerberg is set to receive approximately $174 million in cash when Meta issues its inaugural dividend in March. Despite dividends typically being associated with slower-growing companies, Meta joins the ranks of major tech players like Apple, Microsoft, and Nvidia in offering dividends on Wall Street.

“Paying a dividend suggests the company wants to reboot its reputation and be taken more seriously. But ultimately the amount being paid is only a token gesture,” Dan Coatsworth, an investment analyst at AJ Bell was quoted by news agency Reuters as saying.

On Friday, Meta’s surge in market capitalization surpassed the previous record held by Amazon, which experienced a $190 billion increase on February 4, 2022, following an impressive quarterly report.

The day before this remarkable gain, Meta faced a historic loss of over $200 billion in value, marking the largest loss in the history of the US stock market, driven by a disappointing forecast issued by the company.

Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s CEO and co-founder, stands to benefit significantly from Meta’s dividend plan, with approximately 350 million Meta Class A and Class B shares, potentially earning him around $175 million each quarter.

Last year, optimism surrounding artificial intelligence contributed to a 24% rally in the S&P 500, with Meta, Nvidia, Microsoft, and Broadcom reaching new record highs. Following Friday’s gain, Meta has now seen a 35% increase in 2024.

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