Individual Investors Weigh In on Facebook's IPO

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Unless you've been living underneath a rock for the better part of a month (and maybe even then), you probably know that social networking giant Facebook will go public at the end of next week. The financial press has been covering this story like white on rice, and for good reason. Facebook has had a truly profound impact on the way hundreds of millions of people around the world interact with one another. And while its social impact goes relatively undisputed, buying Facebook's stock after its IPO has been called into question, especially for the average investor. To get a pulse on whether individual investors think buying Facebook's stock is a good idea, we surveyed more than 4,000 of our readers to get their opinions. We combined their thoughts into an infographic. Take a peek, share it with your friends, and leave your comments below.

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Dari Fitzgerland and Alison Southwick hold no position in any of the companies mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Read/Post Comments (12) | Recommend This Article (32)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On May 13, 2012, at 12:00 AM, sikiliza wrote:

    Muppet buyers lining up to get slaughtered. I might wait for the likes of Zynga to shoot through the roof and then decide how many puts to pick up on FB hangers-on. I will also buy a big bag of popcorn.

  • Report this Comment On May 13, 2012, at 4:11 PM, JEMSS wrote:

    Here are my thoughts on Facebook and the intrinsic value.

    Note: If a link is not allowed, I can try to cut/paste my comments into this.

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2012, at 11:33 AM, michaelkm8 wrote:

    "The less experience the investor has, the greater their interest in buying shares" I think this line of thought is misleading without the context of investor experience. People who have more experience in investing are probably closer to retirement and more risk adverse, so why would they be invest much into the new hot stocks of today? Facebook, in my opinion has something that many companies want to buy into, 900 mmau. That's a Google amount of a captured audience for advertisers. Facebook may not have a product, but they sure can get businesses to pay for their customer base.

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 11:11 AM, chopchop0 wrote:

    I don't short IRL, but I do on my fool CAPS account. I'm just wondering whether to short after week 1 or month 1 :D

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 11:15 AM, mikecart1 wrote:

    Muppets or not, I would bet everything I own that Facebook will be at some point in the future - even intraday - higher than it's IPO price this week. Based on that, Facebook should be bought to some degree by everyone on the planet. Obviously, don't drop your entire net worth. But use it as a speculative play that is slightly better than speculative and keep your eye on it. Don't get greedy and be ready to sell it all even if it goes up by just a dollar or two.

    30 shares is about $1000. If it goes up a couple of dollars that is $60 in the bank. LOL hey that is something. Don't lose grasp on reality. Money is money. $60 buys a lot of food at the grocery store. Something millions of Americans have problems doing on a weekly basis.

    Cheers! :)

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 11:39 AM, sikiliza wrote:

    @mikecart1: "Facebook should be bought to some degree by everyone on the planet."

    I have heard a lot of sweeping generalizations in the past including "everyone should own a house because it's part of the American dream". Yours takes the cake for famous last words of May 2012.

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 1:52 PM, AsianEagle wrote:

    How GOOG is making money today? Facebook is going to follow the same way!!! GOOG in serach engine but FB in social network.

    FB after raising billions of dollars I don't think it is going to focus ONLY in its social network; it would probably develop other sources of income, like AMZN - Kindle, GOOG - Android & YouTube; MSFT - XBox, etc.

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 2:07 PM, TMFLomax wrote:

    Any IPO this hyped and eagerly awaited scares me. This infographic is interesting, given the number of less experienced investors who are dying to buy in. I'm in the "wait-and-see" camp for sure.


  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2012, at 7:00 PM, FutureMonkey wrote:

    I kind of remember the same talk around Google's IPO.

    I'm not planning on investing the family farm, but I'd go in for a small position just so I'm not watching from the sidelines of what could be the largest and most influencial commercial venture in the world. Whether it makes me any money or not or if the IPO is the best entry point I have no idea. Just don't want to do what I did with Google - scof at the fools lining up to slaughter only to realize after a 300% rise in market cap that there is more to the business than hype.


  • Report this Comment On May 17, 2012, at 2:27 PM, TheDumbMoney2 wrote:

    Considering fooling around and buying some put options when it hits $50 or $60. But I probably will just sit it out.

  • Report this Comment On May 17, 2012, at 2:30 PM, catoismymotor wrote:

    Is it possible to short a stock right out of the gate?

  • Report this Comment On May 17, 2012, at 2:40 PM, TheDumbMoney2 wrote:


    Very dangerous, likelihood of a MAJOR post-IPO pop is extremely high IMHO.


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