When Facebook went public May 18 its offering tipped the scales at $16 billion, the second-largest U.S. IPO on record. A bit more than a week later, the social network is leading a slightly more ignominious list.
In terms of market capitalization, Facebook has been the biggest loser since its debut among the companies in the Russell 1000 index, according to Bespoke Investment Group.
From May 18 through Tuesday, Facebook has lost $21.8 billion in market value (market cap is share price multiplied by number of shares outstanding). That figure dwarfs the next biggest declines over that span: $3.6 billion for Dell, $2.9 billion for Pfizer and $2.5 billion for Google, the company whose 2004 IPO was used by many as a benchmark for the Facebook launch. (Rounding out the not-top 10: Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, EMC, VMWare, NetApp and Lowe’s.)
To be fair to Facebook, it is worth noting that newly-listed issues have a tendency to suffer more volatility in general. Throw in the frenzy around the offering – from Mark Zuckerberg’s appearances, or lack thereof, during the company’s roadshow to the controversy over Nasdaq’s opening of the stock and whether underwriters including Morgan Stanley favored certain clients over others when selling the shares – and it adds up to a challenging start for company’s public life. (See “Facebook Lawsuits Start Flying.”)
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