Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg rang the Nasdaq opening bell from company headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif.Facebook Inc. shares headed off to a rocky start this Friday in what has been the most highly anticipated initial public offering in history as of right now.
Facebook stock has jumped more than 10% in just the first few minutes it began trading. But then sellers swept into the market and that gain has evaporated.
“It’s a total disaster because the stock is trading right at the IPO price,” said Francis Gaskins, editor of IPOdesktop.com in Marina del Rey. “They didn’t want that in a million years. A traditional IPO is up 10% or 15%.”
The stock most recently hovered at about $40, which is only $2 above what shares were priced at late Thursday night. Shares touched that $38 level multiple times during trading.
Investors also had to contend with a nearly three-hour delay for the stock to even open. The Nasdaq kept the stock halted as it processed the buy and sell orders that came through this morning.
Still, Facebook raised $16 billion in what will go down as the third-largest public offering in U.S. history and the biggest ever for a technology company.
Major U.S. stock indexes were all higher in the hours leading up to the public offering. Once Facebook shares began to weaken, however, so did the market.