Wilting IPOs show exuberance not yet irrational

April 23, 2010

The lackluster reception for Thursday’s slew of U.S. initial public offerings may be a downer for companies contemplating a public listing on U.S. exchanges, but it shouldn’t be discouraging for everyone else. It suggests investors are still being sensibly choosy even though financial markets are awash with easy money.

There has been plenty of talk of bubble trouble. Rock bottom interest rates around the developed world and the return of infectious confidence have raised fears that the rapid recovery in stocks and bonds over the past year is unsustainable. Yet investor exuberance doesn’t look completely irrational just yet.

Of the seven IPOs on U.S. stock exchanges on Thursday, all but one — software company SPS Commerce  — initially priced at or below the bottom of their expected ranges the night before. Most of the new stocks did no better than holding steady once they started trading, either. Two fell, including Mitel Networks whose shares dropped around 12 percent on their debut. Three others closed unchanged from their initial prices, while just two managed a first day pop, notably SPS which gained 13 percent.

The clutch of deals made it the busiest day for new listings since November 2007, but it’s hard to argue that investors were knocked over by a wave supply. Deal sizes were below average, with the biggest from investment company THL Credit just shy of $200 million.

Instead, investors seem still to be discriminating, as they have for much of this year. Of the 39 IPOs in 2010, only five have priced above their expected ranges, according to Renaissance Capital.

That’s hardly great news for underwriters keen to clear the backlog of an estimated $20 billion worth of deals. But it’s at least a sign that U.S. markets are still resisting some of the many temptations of easy money.

Comments

That’s great, I know it is costly and time consuming, but line graphs over time will be great; and

Comparisons to the ‘other economic blocs’.

Just some context and intelligent nexus please. Or am I displaying exuberance ?

By the bye, apparently 77% of analysts out here believes our market is going to crash, and judging by your single parent sell off stats on main page, V, W and Theta is competing for gold.

Posted by Ghandiolfini | Report as abusive
 

…that would be short-selling off-plan, on-spec.

Posted by Ghandiolfini | Report as abusive
 

From Felix’s quote: “There was a time when a Wall Street bond trader could work with a short seller to create a bond to fail, trick and bribe the ratings companies into blessing the bond, then sell the bond to a slow-witted German without having to worry if anyone would ever know, or care, what he’d just done.” Unquote

IT IS ALL STARTING OVER AGAIN…

Posted by Ghandiolfini | Report as abusive
 

Depends. Average P/E for the SP500 is up, but not to stupid levels, and corporate earning are rising; jobs should, one would hope, follow at some point. I’m not worried of a cratering yet, but I also don’t think the earnings are there yet to push prices much higher and still keep them in sensible range. As you have noted repeatedly, bond yields pretty much stink, and money markets… might as well pad your mattress.

But, it’s spring here, and always glorious.

Posted by ARJTurgot | Report as abusive
 

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/