Friday, May 18, 2012

About that Facebook IPO...

Today's much-hyped Facebook IPO (see here for evidence of the hype) turned out to be the non-event of the year, as the stock (and the broader market) fizzled. As my main man Ted pointed out over on the Twitter, Facebook was one underwriter bid away from the most embarrassing IPO in history.

What does he mean by that? Here's two pictures that tell the whole story:

The first one is today's 1-minute chart for the stock, which literally looks like somebody cut off the bottom portion of the chart, right at its IPO price of 38. Charts aren't supposed to have floors like that.

The second picture tells you why that happened--it shows the bids and offers for Facebook stock during those few minutes (courtesy of BusinessInsider). I've circled the monstrous size of the 38.00 bid for you--that is so big that it could only be the underwriters of the IPO, protecting the stock to make sure that it didn't trade below the IPO price (which would be an epic embarrassment).

Without that bid, the stock easily could have traded down into the mid-30s if not lower.

I'll get back to my usually scheduled programming to send you into the weekend, but I felt like I had to share this, because I know a lot of you are (and were) following the hype on this one. Very, very strange day, and one that has to be somewhat ominous for Facebook and its shareholders.

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