William L. Moore
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Citi Loves FB Even After Share Surge

Shares of Facebook Inc  surged as much as 11 percent after the social media giant reported better-than-expected quarterly results.

For the first quarter, the company posted earnings of $0.77 per share, $0.15 ahead of the Street's consensus. Revenue of $5.38 billion, up an 52 percent year-over-year, beat estimates by $120 million. Facebook also registered a 15 percent increase in MAUs, to 1.65 billion. Mobile MAUs were up 21 percent to 1.51 billion.

Citi's Mark May maintains his Buy rating, and raised the price target on the stock to $141 from $133, saying that Facebook's core business along with new growth from Instagram, FAN and other initiatives drove strong performance.

The analyst sees earnings of $0.80 a share for the second quarter and $3.59 a share for the full year. For the full year, May expects revenue of $25.9 billion (consensus $25.62 billion), implying year-over-year growth of 46 percent and adj. EBITDA of $16.2 billion. The Street expects earnings of $0.72 a share for the second quarter and $3.15 a share for 2016.

"We note that over the mid- to long-term FB has various opportunities to layer on new, meaningful revenue streams (e.g., Instagram, video, FAN, messaging, etc.)," May wrote in a note.

Shares of Facebook closed Wednesday's regular trading session at $108.89. In the pre-market, shares climbed 11 percent to $121 and shortly after the open, the stock was up about 10 percent at $119.21.