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Meta shares surge. No, not Facebook’s Meta

A Canadian company’s stock is surging. Investors are apparently confusing it for the rebranded Facebook.

Meta Materials Inc., a material-science company with the ticker symbol MMAT, has suddenly become a hot stock. Shares of Meta Materials rose as much as 10% on Friday before recently trimming those gains. The action comes after Thursday’s 4.8% rally.

While Meta Materials appears to have no relation to Facebook Inc., it soon will have a similar corporate name. Facebook is changing its name to Meta Platforms Inc., a ploy aimed at better positioning the company around the metaverse.

“I applaud Mark Zuckerberg’s & Meta Platforms Inc.’s multi billion dollar commitment to make the metaverse a reality,” Meta Materials Chief Executive and founder George Palikaras said in an email.

Similar confusion has occurred in the past. Some investors put their money into Zoom Technologies last year, sending the stock higher, instead of investing into popular work-from-home videoconferencing service Zoom Video Communications Inc. It didn’t help that Zoom Technologies’ ticker was ZOOM.

The same thing happened when individual investors were excited about movie theater chain AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. Shares of AMC Networks Inc., which has a similar ticker to AMC Entertainment, also rose. AMC Networks is an entertainment company whose brands include AMC and IFC.

Facebook announced its name change on Thursday as it faces scrutiny from lawmakers, users and researchers. The Wall Street Journal recently published a series of investigative articles detailing how the company knew its platforms were harmful in some ways and didn’t fix them.

Meta Materials, meanwhile, is different. The Nova Scotia-based company has a technology platform to help brands with products in areas such as 5G communications and consumer electronics.

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