INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — It’s an inauspicious start for Facebook’s stock, now sitting 42 percent lower than its IPO price. The good news, however, is most ETF investors are unaffected. Let’s look at Facebook’s timeline of events.The overpriced IPO had a delayed opening because of a glitch in Nasdaq’s computer system. People lost money as a result, including large firms like UBS. The Swiss banking giant announced it lost $356 million on the Nasdaq’s “gross mishandling” of the stock. Their traders apparently placed buy orders but didn’t receive fill confirmations. So trades were sent again, leading to duplicate orders. Comically, the Nasdaq only set aside $62 million to compensate customers who lost money.Facebook’s highest price came early on its first day of trading. It was downhill from there. The stock fell 12 percent on July 27 after its first earnings report. Mark Zuckerberg ... welcome to running a publicly traded company!Finally, last week Facebook announced that nearly nine percent of user accounts are fake. These include duplicate accounts as well as accounts for babies and pets. Advertisers were not pleased. Did Facebook executives not know this when they went public? Time for the lawyers to get involved.Here’s the good news: Most exchange-traded funds (ETFs) don’t hold Facebook, yet. That’s because most ETFs are index funds and there is an evaluation period before new stocks are added to market indexes. Facebook will be added to the Nasdaq 100 the next time it rebalances its holdings, but that hasn’t happened yet so the large PowerShares QQQ has no Facebook exposure.There are exceptions. Facebook has a six percent weighting in the Global X Social Media ETF (SOCL). The iShares U.S. Technology Sector (IYW) holds Facebook, but its weighting is only 0.37 percent of the portfolio.Requiring a seasoning period before new issues are added to large indexes like the Sandamp;P 500 or Nasdaq 100 protected investors from the hoopla surrounding the much-hyped and wildly overpriced Facebook IPO.— David Vomund is an Incline Village-based fee-only money manager. Information is found at www.ETFportfolios.net or by calling 775-832-8555. Clients hold the positions mentioned in this article. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Consult your financial adviser before purchasing any security.
August 6, 2012 | Back to: News