Alibaba Group Holding Ltd Opens At $93

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd Opens At $93
By Charliepug (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA)’s shares just began trading on the New York Stock Exchange after the company’s initial public offering. The IPO is one of the largest of all time, and shares quickly climbed from the IPO price of $68 per share, hitting about $93 per share by opening time.

Shares did not begin trading immediately at opening bell this morning because the New York Stock Exchange wanted to ensure that there would not be any trading glitches.

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Alibaba Group Holding stock quickly soars

Alibaba raised nearly $22 billion through its IPO this week, making it now one of the world’s most valuable companies. CNBC reported that $1 billion of Alibaba stock was allocated to retail investors and that the book’s top 10 accounts secured 30% of the company’s shares. About 10% of the stock went to executives’ friends and retail. In all about $1.5 billion was handed out in the company’s “friends and family” program.

At $89 per share, the Chinese online retailer has a market capitalization of $230 billion, according to CNBC. That makes Alibaba about the same size as global banking institution JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM). If (or when) the company hits about $95 per share, it will have a market cap that’s larger than Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT).

Alibaba sees more demand than Twitter

It’s no surprise that Alibaba Group stock soared so high so fast. The New York Times reports that it was “heavily oversubscribed.” The online Chinese retailer had originally planned to hold its IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. However, regulators would not approve the company’s partnership structure. The structure puts fewer than 30 associates and employees majority control over who gets appointed to the company’s board.

Seabreeze Partners’ Doug Cass tweeted today that according to TD Ameritrade, customer orders for Alibaba stock surpassed orders for Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR)’s IPO by 2.5 times.

Yahoo remains quiet on Alibaba day

Much of Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO)’s valuation in the last several quarters has been linked to Alibaba, of which it has a significant stake. Some initially saw the search giant as a sort of back door entry into Alibaba, but today anyway, investors don’t necessarily seem to be biting.

Shares had barely edged upward as of this writing, although the day’s volume shot through the roof. More than 77 million shares of Yahoo had already changed hands before noon Eastern, compared to the daily average volume of 27.8 million shares.

Is Alibaba’s gain bitcoin’s loss?

Today as Alibaba Group stock soared, the value of the bitcoin slumped. CNBC reports that some fans of the digital currency are blaming the Alibaba IPO, saying that Chinese money is being removed from the digital currency to take part in the online retailer’s first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

Others say there’s no reason to believe this, like Peter Schiff of Euro Pacifica Capital, who told CNBC that the view is “just grasping at straws.” He doesn’t think there are enough “bitcoin guys” willing to jump ship on the digital currency in order to get into Alibaba at the very beginning. He blamed the general downward trend that’s been happening since bitcoin peaked in December.

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