Investors who owned stocks in the 2010s generally experienced some big gains. In fact, the SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE: SPY) total return for the decade was 250.5%. But there’s no question some big-name stocks did much better than others along the way.
Twitter’s Difficult Decade
One market laggard of the last decade was social media giant Twitter Inc (NYSE: TWTR).
Twitter held one of the most high-profile IPOs in recent history back in November of 2013, selling IPO shares for $26 and raising $1.8 billion. Twitter came roaring out of the gate after going public, but enthusiasm for the stock soon began to wane when user growth started to slow and the company struggled to effectively monetize its customers.
In recent years, Twitter has finally started to demonstrate that its advertising business is taking hold, but it has still struggled with consistency in growth and earnings numbers. The company’s average revenue per user still reportedly trails competitor Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) by a wide margin.
Twitter hit its all-time high of $74.73 within months of its IPO before falling back below its IPO price by late 2015. Twitter shares hit their all-time low of $13.73 in mid-2016 shortly after issuing weak sales guidance.
After more than two years, Twitter IPO investors finally got back above water in early 2018, and the stock reached as high as $47.79 in mid-2018 as rumors of a potential buyout of the platform swirled on a nearly weekly basis. By the end of 2018, Twitter was back down to as low as $26.19 after a buyout never happened. By mid-2019, the stock made it to $45.85 before it finally stalled out.
Fears surrounding regulatory crackdowns related to political abuse and data mishandling weighed in the stock. In addition, Twitter announced it would be banning political advertising on its platform in the 2020 election season, voluntarily giving up a lucrative revenue source.
2020 And Beyond
Negative headlines sent Twitter shares back down to as low as $28.63 in late 2019, but the stock has since resumed its rally. On Thursday, Twitter hit its highest level since October, climbing as high as $39 in early trading following its earnings beat.
Despite the controversy and struggles along the way, Twitter investors have certainly turned a profit in recent years. In fact, $100 in Twitter IPO shares would now be worth $148.
Looking ahead, analysts are expecting more struggles from Twitter in 2020. The average price target among the 30 analysts covering the stock is $35, suggesting 9.3% downside from current levels.