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This Day In Market History: The Yahoo! IPO

Wayne Duggan

Each day, Benzinga takes a look back at a notable market-related moment that occurred on this date.

What Happened?

On this day 22 years ago, Yahoo! went public.

Where The Market Was

The Dow finished the day at 5,532.59. The S&P 500 finished at 636.71. Today, the Dow is trading at 24,511.32 and the S&P 500 is trading at 2,668.09.

What Else Was Going On In The World?

In 1996, the IBM (NYSE: IBM) computer Deep Blue defeated world chess champion Gary Kasparov. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) and partner NBC launched cable news channel MSNBC. Average monthly rent was $554.

Yahoo’s IPO

Well before Google became the dominant global search engine, Yahoo! was the website that many internet users set as their homepage. Investor enthusiasm for Yahoo! was through the roof. Its IPO priced at just $13 per share, but it opened its first day of trading at $24.50 and never looked back, finishing the day up 154 percent. At the time, Yahoo’s first-day gains were the third-largest of any IPO on record. 

When the dust settled, Yahoo stock closed the first day at a price of $33 per share, representing a market cap of $848 million.

Yahoo’s stock peaked at $118.75 during the dot-com bubble in 2000. Although the company survived the bursting of the bubble, its share price never made it back to those levels again.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) completed a deal to acquire Yahoo’s core business in 2017. The remainder of Yahoo’s business now trades as Altaba Inc. (NASDAQ: AABA).

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