Robinhood IPO: Stocks tumble after opening at $ 38

SAN FRANCISCO – Robinhood helped fuel a “meme stock” frenzy earlier this year that sent small business stock prices into a rollercoaster ride. On Thursday, its own initial public offering was much more subdued.

Shares of the stock startup began trading at $ 38, the same price as its offering, but then fell. Its offer price, which valued the company at $ 31.7 billion and was at the bottom of its proposed range, showed investors may hesitate to buy the company’s grand mission to change Wall Street.

Robinhood’s free stock trading service has helped create the conditions for wild business twists in so-called meme stocks, which are driven by investors promoting their trades on social media. The company, which is on a mission to democratize finance, also decided to sell up to a third of its offering to retailers through its own app, adding to the unpredictability of the initial trade.

Its offering is among the largest in a hectic year for public market debuts, although few of the companies have had the profile and level of controversy, including cuts, fines, congressional hearings, protests and memes, like Robinhood.

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