(WSJ) Facebook’s IPO Sputters

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Facebook Inc.took eight years to stage one of the most anticipated initial public offerings ever. The anticlimax came Friday, as Wall Street bankers struggled to prevent the newly minted stock from ending its first day with a loss.

he stock had been widely predicted to soar on its first day. Instead, up until the closing moments of the trading session, Facebook's underwriters battled to keep the stock from slipping below its offering price of $38 a share. Such a stumble would have been a significant embarrassment, particularly for a prominent new issue like Facebook, the most heavily traded IPO of all time.

In the end, the bankers succeeded. When trading on Nasdaq ended at 4 p.m., the social network's stock was up just a hair, 0.6%, at $38.23.

The roller-coaster day—Facebook's shares started out jumping roughly 11%, before cooling off—was also beset by trading glitches and a 30-minute delay in the opening of trading. Nasdaq OMX Group Inc.didn't respond to requests for comment.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchBlogging & the Internet--Social NetworkingScience & Technology* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeStock Market

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