Facebook’s share price today hit an all time low of $19.82 which values the social networking giant at almost half its May initial offering price of $38.
The company’s stock dropped 88 cents on Thursday, dropping to its new low after the company posted disappointing earnings last week.
It also directly followed the revelation today there are now more than 83 million fake users on its social network.
The astonishing figure makes up 8.7% of all Facebook’s 995 million active users.
The true scale of the problem was hidden in a company filing published this week, the first since the firm went public.
Duplicate profiles made up 4.8% of the fakes, user-misclassified accounts amounted to 2.4%, and 1.5% of users were described as ‘undesirable’.
There were 83.09 million fake users in total, which Facebook classified in three groups.
The largest group were duplicate accounts, such as those set up by people to keep their activities from their partner.
The firm defined them as ‘an account that a user maintains in addition to his or her principal account.’
Others imaginary users were described as ‘user-misclassified’ where, Facebook said ‘users have created personal profiles for a business, organisation, or non-human entity such as a pet’.
Users have created pages for cats, dogs and other animals.
There were also a large number of ‘undesirable’ accounts were profiles deemed to be in breach of Facebook’s terms of service.
These accounts were believed to have been set up to send out junk email messages.
The reason for the drop is due to the fact thatÂ Facebook’s first tier of restrictions go away on August 16, when about 271 million shares will be available for trading, with another 243 million shares set to become available for trading between mid-October and mid-November.
But the day most investors are bracing for is Nov. 14, when more than 1.2 billion shares will suddenly be available for trading.
The imminent lock-up expiration also means that Wall Street analysts who participated in the Facebook IPO will once again go quiet, for a 30-day period, potentially creating more uncertainty in a stock that has experienced one of the rockiest market debuts in memory.
‘The sentiment on this thing is so negative,’ said Topeka Capital Markets analyst Victor Anthony. ‘I think this thing may continue to tick down until you see some sort of meaningful catalyst which unfortunately may not show until third-quarter earnings.’
On Wednesday, Facebook’s director of platform partnerships, Ethan Beard, and the director of platform marketing, Katie Mitic, each separately announced plans to leave the company. They represent the latest of several departures — including that of Facebook’s chief technology officer in June — since the IPO.
The admission comes as Facebook is attempting to recover from a shambolic public offering.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is estimated to have seen his own personal fortune fall from$13.7 billion to just over $10 billion in the space of a week.