After a hitting record high in November, Google shares have fallen 40%, reports the Los Angeles Times. Investors are concerned that a downturn in consumer spending could slow Google's growth—previously thought to be recession-proof. "Now the shine is off Google, whether deservedly or not," one media analyst said of the pioneering search giant.
Investors are concerned that Google's heavy investment in developing Internet advertising isn't paying off. Many are still optimistic, however, if not quite as wildly as before, the Times notes. "This is Google's first rough patch," says the author of a book on the California outfit. "It will test the character of the company."