By The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook’s stock has fallen below $30 for the first time since its much-awaited public debut this month.
The stock fell $2.40, or nearly 8 percent, to $29.40 in midday trading on Tuesday. That’s down 23 percent since its public stock debut. It went as low as $29.23 earlier in the day.
Facebook Inc. began trading publicly on May 18 following one of the most anticipated stock offerings in history.
The site, which was born in a dorm room eight years ago and has grown into a worldwide network of almost a billion people, was supposed to offer proof that social media is a viable business and more than a passing fad.
Facebook’s initial public offering of stock priced at $38 and raised $16 billion for Facebook and some of its early investors. It had valued the company at $104 billion – more than Amazon.com Inc., at $98 billion, at the time.
But the stock’s public debut was marred by technical glitches at the Nasdaq Stock Market that delayed trading.
And the company, along with the investment banks that led the IPO, is the subject of at least two shareholder lawsuits. They allege that analysts at the large underwriting investment banks cut their second-quarter and full-year forecasts for Facebook just before the IPO and told only a handful of clients. Morgan Stanley has declined to comment. Facebook calls the lawsuits “without merit.”
With the latest drop, Facebook’s value is about $80 billion.