Facebook fizzles in debut, shares skirt IPO price

As P.T. Barnum said, there's a Zucker born every minute.

Facebook Inc shares fizzled on their first day of trade on the Nasdaq, erasing early gains of as much as 18 percent to trade close to their initial public offering price.

The stock opened 11 percent higher and rose to $45 before rapidly heading south in frenzied trade, touching its initial public offering price of $38. The No. 1 online social network raised as much as $18.4 billion in one of the biggest initial public offerings in U.S. history.

After a delay in the opening print that drove up anxiety levels among traders and onlookers outside the Nasdaq, the company’s closely watched stock began trading at $42.05, compared with an IPO price of $38.

To rapturous applause from employees, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg — flanked by Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Nasdaq Chief Executive Robert Greifeld — rang the bell to kick off trading at the company’s Silicon Valley headquarters at 6:30 a.m. Pacific time.

The 28-year-old billionaire founder hugged and high-fived Sandberg and other employees in celebration after he pressed the remote button.

The area outside Facebook’s offices at 1 Hacker Way was packed with throngs of photographers, more than 12 television trucks, and a TV news helicopter hovering overhead as the excitement reached fever pitch.

“A 15 to 20 percent pop is in the realm of possibility,” said Tim Loughran, a finance professor at the University of Notre Dame, before the start of trade.

“Given they already moved their IPO range up and increased the size, that’s bullish to begin with.”

Some expect shares could rise 30 percent or more on Friday, despite ongoing concerns about Facebook’s long-term money-making potential. An average of Morningstar analyst estimates put the closing price for Facebook shares on Friday at $50.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

'Barack Obama cheats on Michelle' claims Japanese politician…

A senior Japanese politician has marred Barack Obama's official visit to Tokyo with bizarre claims that the President cheats on his wife Michelle. Kazuyuki Hamada,…

International

British Royal family devastated by freak NY death…

The British royals have been left devastated by the death of Mark Shand, younger brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, after a freak fall in…

Local

VIDEO: Police seek suspect in molotov cocktail attack…

Police released surveillance video on Wednesday in hopes of tracking down a man who threw a molotov cocktail inside a Brooklyn corner store.

Local

City Council budget asks for 1,000 additional NYPD…

Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito unveiled the City Council's budget priorities on Wednesday, including the extra cops for the NYPD at a cost of $94.3 million.

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 9

It was only an hour-long episode, but there's a lot to cover this week. The drama of Survivor strikes again as the identity of the…

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, April 23: 'Suburgatory,' 'Modern…

'Suburgatory' The men of "Suburgatory" go camping and Tessa mentors a social outcast in a Miss Chatswin contest, which brings her, once again, into conflict…

The Word

The best lines from Oprah's ex-stepmother's Daily Mail…

Oprah’s ex-stepmother, Barbara Winfrey, is out for revenge.

Books

A debut novel about fate, love and moving…

Pia Padukone talks about her debut novel, "Where Earth Meets Water."

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

NFL

Giants 2014 regular season schedule

The Giants will play five prime-time games — against the Lions, Redskins, Eagles, Colts and Cowboys.

MLB

Jets 2014 regular season schedule

The Jets will play three prime-time games — against the Bears, Patriots and Dolphins — as well as a CBS national game in Week 2 at Green Bay.

NBA

Phil Jackson talked to Steve Kerr, pushes for…

Knicks president Phil Jackson spoke to the media for the first time since firing head coach Mike Woodson on Monday.

Style

Pippa Middleton's Etsy pick: Golden Thread Jewelry

Get a look at the jewelry Pippa Middleton loves and find out how you can buy it too.

Parenting

What every parent needs to know to get…

Mom and author of "Small Talk," Tracey Blake, shares her five practical tips to help you develop your children's language skills.

Sex

Subway crush: Meet your soulmate on your commute

Read about a couple who has been 40 years after meeting on the train.

Tech

Happy birthday, Game Boy! The handheld console turns…

Nintendo's Game Boy turns 25 this week. To commemorate, we look at some of its better games, like "Tetris" and "The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening."