The logo for social media giant Facebook. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, FILE)

INTERNATIONAL – Facebook said it plans to buy back $9 billion (R127bn) more of its shares, in a bid to boost confidence in the company after a recent stock slump.

Facebook shares have fallen almost 40 percent since the social-media giant said in July that it expects growth to slow and profit margins to narrow in coming years. Its main social network is reaching a saturation point, so it needs to explore new types of business models. The company has also been facing scandals over its handling of misinformation and user data.

Facebook said in a regulatory filing that its board had previously authorized share repurchases of up to $15 billion as part of a program started in 2017. The $9 billion buyback announced on Friday is in addition to those prior authorizations, the company said.

Facebook shares rose 1.4 percent in extending trading. Earlier on Friday, the stock closed at $137.42 in New York.