The stock, initially sold to institutional investors for $13 a share, opened at 14 but ended the day down at 13. Invemed Associates of New York was the underwriter for the initial public offering.
EarthLink's IPO comes as stock prices for other ISPs are well below their 1996 highs.
EarthLink is targeting individuals and small businesses, while many ISPs--such as Netcom and PSINet--are getting out of the consumer business. They fear that the entry of telephone giants like AT&T and the Baby Bells into the Internet access business puts independent ISPs at risk in the home market.