Twitter’s stock price plummeted more than 6% on Monday, the first day of trading since the social media giant booted President Donald Trump from its platform.
Last Friday, Twitter announced it had permanently suspended Trump’s account “due to the risk of further incitement of violence” after supporters of the president stormed the U.S. Capitol in protest of the 2020 election results. In the months preceding, Trump had frequently taken to Twitter to argue that the election was fraudulent.
It was the first time that the social media company had ever banned a head of state.
Conservatives blasted the ban as an unprecedented attack on free speech; leftists lauded it as “the most important moment in the history of social media”; and on Monday, investors expressed their own concerns, putting the social media company’s ticker price under pressure.
According to Yahoo! Finance, Twitter’s stock opened the day down 10% before cratering to as low as $45.17 per share, or 12.3% down on the day. The stock eventually rebounded over the next several hours to end the day down 6.4%.
Business Insider reported that the early drop erased more than $5 billion from Twitter’s market capitalization.
Trump’s account boasted more than 88 million followers — making it one of the most popular on the platform — and his provocative tweets over the past six years generated tremendous publicity for the platform.
The recent drop in stock price likely represents investors’ concerns that Twitter may soon become less competitive if supporters of the president decided to leave the platform en masse. Conservatives have long-believed that Big Tech companies like Twitter unfairly censor conservative voices and ideas.
In fact, many conservatives in recent months have been migrating over to Parler, a free speech alternative to Twitter. Though Parler was in danger of shutting down indefinitely over the weekend after Apple and Google removed Parler from their application stores and Amazon removed it from its web services due to its lack of a content moderation policy.
On Monday, Parler sued Amazon for antitrust violations.
Twitter was not the only social media company to experience a stock downturn Monday after de-platforming the president. Facebook and Google also saw their stock prices drop, though not nearly as sharply.
Twitter’s stock plummets in first trading day after banning President Trump The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ TheBlaze.