By 9:45 AM ET (1345 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 37 points, or 0.1%, at 35,640 points. The S&P 500 was also down 0.1% and the Nasdaq Composite was flat.
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) will be the first of the megacaps to report, having lost its $1 trillion moniker in recent weeks under a barrage of negative publicity about its governance and its operating outlook. Facebook stock underperformed again in early dealings, losing 0.3% after more allegations of poor governance were levelled at it over the weekend by a second whistleblower. The stock fell another 0.4% to test the five-month low that it hit earlier in October. Sentiment toward social media stocks in general was dented last week by Snap (NYSE:SNAP)’s announcement that advertisers had slowed their spending after Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) made it harder for social media companies to target ads with its latest privacy rules.
That negative mood music is leaving social-driven stocks vulnerable to other disappointments. Pinterest (NYSE:PINS) stock fell 14% after PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) said it isn’t currently considering a merger with the site. PayPal stock rose 4.9% on relief – reports that it was lining up a deal had hit the payments company’s stock on perceptions that the price was too high.