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Friday, May 18, 2012

Facebook goes public


Reuters / Valentin Flauraud
Reuters / Valentin Flauraud
Facebook has debuted in share trading on the US platform for IT companies Nasdaq, to find out how much status updates and billions of likes are worth on Wall Street.

Facebook sells 82 million shares in the first 30 seconds of trading, with the stock opening at $43 per share, Reuters reports. The pricing was above even the high end of the settled price range of $38 per share, with analysts saying Facebook shares could gain up to 50% from its opening price during the first trading day. A $38 price tag valued the world’s most popular social network at $104 billion. With 421 million shares on sale, the Initial Public Offering (IPO) was expected to raise up to $18 billion. Experts say it's a big windfall for a company that began just 8 years ago with no obvious way of making money.

Many analysts however advise potential new shareholders to hold off buying into Facebook, saying so far there’s not enough understanding of how successful the business is.