Poll Position: Is Facebook stock worth the asking price?

Facebook goes public today, listing shares on Nasdaq at $38 apiece; if you want to buy, trading of stock listed as “FB” commences at 11 a.m.

So, do you? Do you want to buy Facebook stock at that price?

On one hand, there is precedent for highly anticipated tech listings that soared and have not (to date) flamed out. Google of course comes to mind: The search-engine company went public in August 2004 at $85, more than doubled in price by year’s end, and has been trading lately in the $600s — more than seven times its IPO price.

Of course, Google has a way to make money, and lots of it. Facebook? Well, the numbers would indicate it’s at least as good a moneymaker as Google was circa 2004. But there was ominous news this week, when GM said it was pulling its paid advertisements on Facebook because it didn’t think they were effective.

At $38 a share, for a market cap of $100 billion-plus, would you buy Facebook stock?

  • No (43 Votes)
  • Yes (15 Votes)
  • I'll leave this to the pros (12 Votes)

Total Voters: 70

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And $38/share would put Facebook’s market capitalization at more than $100 billion — far bigger than some well-established brands in the tech industry and U.S. business at large. In fact, it probably would make Facebook one of America’s 25 largest publicly traded companies.

Now, I’m no investing pro: I don’t even buy individual stocks, for reasons of a) journalistic ethics and b) the belief I’m not going to outsmart the professionals. So, don’t make any decisions based on this little overview.

Do, however, tell us: Do you think Facebook is worth that kind of money? Would you invest in it at the asking price? That’s this week’s Poll Position. Answer in the nearby poll and the comments thread below.

– By Kyle Wingfield

Find me on Facebook (ha! ironic, I know) or follow me on Twitter

124 comments Add your comment

Junior Samples

May 18th, 2012
10:08 am

Nope, just a fad.

AU Liberal in ATL

May 18th, 2012
10:08 am

Journalistic ethics? Yeah, right.

Jefferson

May 18th, 2012
10:09 am

Dividends don’t lie.

commoncents

May 18th, 2012
10:11 am

AU Liberal- have anything to back up your statement?

clyde

May 18th, 2012
10:11 am

I will purchase some Facebook shares.About 500.I will probably regret it.

td

May 18th, 2012
10:17 am

The problem is that it will be hard to get any of the stock at $38. By the time most average folks can buy the stock it will be over $50.

JF McNamara

May 18th, 2012
10:20 am

There’s an easy answer to this question. What are the P/E and P/E/G ratios and how to those compare to like companies?

$38 is a nebulous number that means nothing. It has more to do with the shares outstanding.

Tiberius - Banned from Bookman's and proud of it!

May 18th, 2012
10:28 am

A bit too flash-in-the-pan for my tastes.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
10:34 am

JF: Like I said, I wasn’t writing a complete overview.

Jefferson

May 18th, 2012
10:39 am

GOP supporters topic of the day =====> money of course, how to get something for nothing.

Truth

May 18th, 2012
10:42 am

New Poll: Was this column by Kyle even worth the time for him to wrote or for you to read? My vote: no on both counts.

Why don’t we talk about something that’s more interesting, like Mitt Romney’s atheism. He doesn’t really believe in God because he believes you’ll be reincarnated to another planet after death. And he has recently developed a man-crush on President Clinton. Any Republican who votes for him has sold his soul to the Devil. (Luke 31:15)

JDW

May 18th, 2012
10:45 am

To much hype in this one. Google is a different model…search vs display. Plus if you look at them $38 for Facebook is more than 20x revenue. Google trades at around 6x.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
10:46 am

Truth (sic): Yes, your hare-brained theories about Mitt Romney are MUCH more interesting…

If that’s what you want to discuss, there are plenty of wacko blogs out there that will suit you much better.

iggy

May 18th, 2012
10:50 am

Im not even on facebook and refuse to be. As net invasion by potential employers, law enforcement continues I would guess some will abandoned FB, and rightly so. Seems the young people love posting their every move on this site. I see no point in it.

Will purchase zero shares of FB…perhaps later one could make a good play.

Truth

May 18th, 2012
10:51 am

Okay, Kyle, prove to me that Romney is a Christian and explain why he has been talking about Clinton every other time he opens his mouth.

Atlanta Thrashers Hockey Fan

May 18th, 2012
10:53 am

Facebook=Feces

Atlanta Spirit Group < Facebook

Atlanta Thrashers Hockey Fan

May 18th, 2012
10:56 am

Facebook & Google make $$$ from stockpiling your personal information and selling it third-parties, without your permission, such as marketing firms, large corporations wanting to brainwash you into buy their garbage goods/services, online media groups, sleaze-bag types working on commission and the Federal Government.

Send them both to The Eternal Lake of Fire where they both belong.

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:09 am

fb priced at $38 per share. Indicative open $42 per share. Still not trading.

George P. Burdell

May 18th, 2012
11:10 am

It seems to me that all the pieces are in place for this IPO to make a few relatively well-off people richer and a lot of less well-off people poorer. Despite CNBC hyping it as much as possible, I wouldn’t go anywhere near this one unless you just happen to have extra cash laying around that you want to get rid of.

Aquagirl

May 18th, 2012
11:12 am

Why don’t we talk about something that’s more interesting

Oh yeah, a protracted discussion of Kolob would really pull in the hits.

http://www.blogger.com

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:15 am

A little history. Remember Palm Pilot IPO at $165. PALM moved to around an alltime high of $175/$180 days later then over the next few years or less, crashed and settled in the $20 to $29 range.

WAIT…it get better.

Shortly afterward PALM did a reverse split which I believe was around 1 for 10. LOL!

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:21 am

Be aware of FB 91 day stock lockup ie dilution.

1961_Xer

May 18th, 2012
11:23 am

Im not even on facebook and refuse to be. As net invasion by potential employers, law enforcement continues I would guess some will abandoned FB, and rightly so. Seems the young people love posting their every move on this site. I see no point in it.

Bingo. I am not on facebook, and I have to restrain my wife from putting every little bit of information about her, me, and our children on FB. Anyone with a small amount of computer skill could find our names, ages, birthplaces, address, telephone number, employers, etc from HER pages, postings and messages. I try to tell here that this is NOT a good idea. Nothing like putting up pictures taken inside our house of kids/events/etc showing all of our belongings, doors, windows, etc., and then announcing to the world that we are going on vacation for a week!

People on reality TV shows have an incentive to let cameras and the public intrude on their lives. I don’t, and I object to Mark Z and the hackers who exploit FB security from profiting off my private life. At some point, folks are going to realize what a bad idea this is… and FB is sunk.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
11:24 am

So far, all FB stock has done is render the Nasdaq paralyzed. You would think we were talking about MSFT…

ByteMe

May 18th, 2012
11:26 am

The problem with their IPO is that the numbers have been hyped beyond logic by the insiders who are cashing out like rats running from a sinking ship.

The biggest problem: they count anyone who clicks a “Like” link on a secondary web site as being an “active user”. You can’t sell ads to those users, so they shouldn’t be included in the counts. The only real active users are those that go to facebook’s own web site. And how many of those click ads on purpose? If they don’t have the revenue and the sustainable growth to back their $10 billion valuation… then run awaaaaay!

Low barrier to entry, no real technology, just lots of hype. Remember MySpace? It’s in the past. This will be too. At some point people will want to re-claim their privacy or they’ll find another site that helps them waste time.

My dollars will get spent on other stocks.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
11:29 am

Btw, I don’t really consider myself a tech nerd — I might be a nerd, but I don’t know quite enough tech to qualify as a “tech nerd” — but this video is hilarious. Stick around long enough to see the look on Bill Gates’ face. Priceless.

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:30 am

$42.00 open.

ByteMe

May 18th, 2012
11:35 am

Open for 5 minutes and already 101 million shares traded…. geezzzzzzz

King Hardware

May 18th, 2012
11:42 am

Give the market a few days and it will tell you precisely what a share of fb is worth, but there’s no guarantee it will stay at that number.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
11:43 am

ByteMe: Well, if I’d had IPO shares, they darn sure would already have been traded by now :-)

ByteMe

May 18th, 2012
11:46 am

Well, if I’d had IPO shares, they darn sure would already have been traded by now

Exactly. It’s already in the 39’s. This isn’t going to end well for anyone but the founders and the lawyers.

Tiberius - Banned from Bookman's and proud of it!

May 18th, 2012
11:47 am

The markets used to be a relatively safe way to invest.

No more.

Nothing more than Vegas-style, Wild West gambling now, and a good 25% of the reason why we’re in this economic mess to begin with.

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:48 am

Ruh Roh George…back to $39.00

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:49 am

$38.50 range….lol

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:50 am

Going below open price imminent.

Aquagirl

May 18th, 2012
11:50 am

Nothing like putting up pictures taken inside our house of kids/events/etc showing all of our belongings, doors, windows, etc., and then announcing to the world that we are going on vacation for a week!

One of my FB friends (not real friends) posted incessantly about her upcoming wedding with full details on place, day, and planned honeymoon. I mean, she put that $#!^ on everything, including random comments about the weather.

Sure enough, the follow up post arrived after the big day, proclaiming her joy at now being Mrs. Snuffy Smith, and even the dirtbag who broke into her house during the wedding couldn’t ruin her newfound happiness.

FB is making a lot of people rich, some in not such a good way.

DannyX

May 18th, 2012
11:52 am

“Btw, I don’t really consider myself a tech nerd”

That’s ok Kyle, I think most of us understand, you are a conservative. “The internet is a series of tubes!!!”

Nothing wrong with intelligent, creative liberals dominating the tech field. Here we go again with another start up company dominated by liberals creating another ipo frenzy!

(Btw, I thought all liberals were socialist commies.)

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:52 am

“Mrs. Snuffy Smith”

LOL!!

iggy

May 18th, 2012
11:59 am

Finn McCool once tried to take his company, FinnBook, public. However, when the bankers/institutions discovered his “business” consisted of selling used coloring and connect-the-dot books he was denied, with extreme prejudiced and forced into bankruptcy.

Aquagirl

May 18th, 2012
12:10 pm

Now the Farmville (ZNGA) people are crashing for some reason.

This is why I don’t play the stock market.

iggy

May 18th, 2012
12:20 pm

ZNGA has halted trading…lol.

Hillbilly D

May 18th, 2012
12:21 pm

I don’t play the stock market. If I was a gambling man, I’d just go to Vegas, where at least they admit the game is rigged in their favor.

Facebook going public looks to me like somebody cashing out at the apex and leaving a lot of suckers holding the bag.

As for being on Facebook, as some of you might have guessed, I have no interest in it. Too damn many people know how to find me already.

Kyle Wingfield

May 18th, 2012
12:24 pm

On another note: What do y’all make of FB co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s decision to renounce his U.S. citizenship right around the time he was to cash in?

Tiberius - Banned from Bookman's and proud of it!

May 18th, 2012
12:26 pm

Someone on Fox Business just said that for every $2 Facebook changes, Mark Zuckerburg either loses or gains a Billion bucks in personal wealth.

I wouldn’t want to have HIS blood pressure today.

Tiberius - Banned from Bookman's and proud of it!

May 18th, 2012
12:29 pm

“On another note: What do y’all make of FB co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s decision to renounce his U.S. citizenship right around the time he was to cash in?”

He seems like one bitter dude right now.

Lil' Barry Bailout (Revised Downward)

May 18th, 2012
12:32 pm

Jefferson: how to get something for nothing.
———-

Putting your capital at risk to enable businesses to grow, hire, and generate profit is not “nothing”.

Why do libtards hate the productive?

iggy

May 18th, 2012
12:34 pm

“On another note: What do y’all make of FB co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s decision to renounce his U.S. citizenship right around the time he was to cash in?”

Shameful.

Don

May 18th, 2012
12:36 pm

Not even close to worth it. Look a the P/E or forward P/E. They’d have to grow their earnings 5X in the relatively short term to have a reasonable P/E. This is a fairly mature product, not a start up. That kind of earnings growth just isn’t happening!

Lil' Barry Bailout (Revised Downward)

May 18th, 2012
12:37 pm

Saverin is a naturalized US citizen (or was). Singapore is just the next stop for him.

Hillbilly D

May 18th, 2012
12:37 pm

What do y’all make of FB co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s decision to renounce his U.S. citizenship right around the time he was to cash in?

If that’s what he wants to do, fine with me but I think they should bar him from ever entering the country again. It’s just a tax avoidance thing. Maybe they could find some way to get him on an IRS beef, like they did with Al Capone. Probably not but I’d do it anyway, just to annoy him.