Palo Alto, Calif. – Facebook is expected to go public in the first quarter of 2012, at a valuation that could top $100 billion, CNBC reported.

The popular social-networking site’s move to file is more than likely triggered by a section of the 1934 Securities Exchange Act, which requires companies to release quarterly financial information when
they reach more than 500 investors, CNBC reported Monday.

Although a Facebook spokesman declined to comment on the timing with CNBC, the news outlet noted that chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg said a Facebook IPO was “inevitable” at a conference late
last spring, describing the IPO as “the next thing that happens.”

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