Why Facebook (FB) Stock Is Up Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Facebook Inc. (FB) were up 2.11% to $61.66 in trading Thursday. The advance comes on the news that its $1 billion acquisition of Instagram in 2012 is paying dividends in the mobile market.

Independant market research firm eMarketer is reporting that Instagram usage surged 35% in 2013. eMarketer estimates that nearly 35 million Americans accessed the social media photo sharing site at least once a month in 2013, approaching Twitter  (TWTR) usage levels "particularly on smartphones and among millenials and Gen Xers."

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"By the end of this year, almost 25% of US smartphone users will snap a photo, slap on a filter and share their creations with friends on Instagram on a monthly basis (or, at least, sign in and check out what their friends are posting)," eMarkter said.

They estimate that 43.2 million Americans -- 17.6% of Internet users -- used Twitter at least once a month in 2013, while Instagram users represented 16.1% of Internet users.

TheStreet Ratings team rates FACEBOOK INC as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate FACEBOOK INC (FB) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed ? some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's return on equity has been disappointing."

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