Facebook overtakes eBay to become no.3 US internet company

Facebook has overtaken eBay's estimated worth of $39.3bn to become the third largest US internet business.

Facebook has overtaken eBay's estimated worth of $39.3bn to become the third largest US internet business.

Shares in the social networking firm are trading at more than $16 on privately held companies' exchange SecondMarket, which puts Facebook's value at around $41bn, according to Bloomberg.

That puts Facebook firmly in third place behind Amazon, worth $74.4bn and Google, valued at $192.9bn.

Analysts said the majority of Americans spend a great deal of their online time on Facebook. The company's valuation highlights growing investor interest in social media firms.

SecondMarket does not release trading data publicly, but Bloomberg cited sources as saying Facebook's value on SecondMarket has more than tripled in the past year.

Facebook makes most of its money through advertising but, unlike most competitors, it enables customers to craft ad campaigns to reach specific audiences.

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