The IPO went off a bit later than expected -- and ended up closing almost unchanged -- after Nasdaq's systems reportedly had trouble informing traders and firms that their orders had been placed.
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
In the end, all of Facebook's major shareholders and insiders who cashed out today got their big payday. It just took a little bit longer for the company to celebrate than initially anticipated.
Facebook this morning was expected to go public at about 8 a.m. PT. However, the shares didn't start trading until approximately 8:30 a.m. PT, causing some to wonder what might have caused the hiccup. During that period, Bloomberg reported that it had received an e-mailed statement from Nasdaq, saying only that it was "experiencing a delay."
According to the Wall Street Journal, the trouble might have started much earlier this morning. Sources the Journal spoke with said that traders were not able to confirm changes or cancellations made to Facebook orders starting as early as 4:30 a.m. PT. Later on in the morning, according to the Journal, traders had not received confirmation from Nasdaq that transactions had actually been completed.
For traders, the implications of a delay in confirmations are major. Without knowing if a sale went through, there's no telling if the transaction was locked in at the desired price. What's worse, the issue can cause some trouble between traders and their not-so-patient clients.
Even so, according to the Journal, Nasdaq had been processing all of the shares as requested -- the issue was solely with its message relays. On Friday afternoon, Bloomberg reported that the SEC will be reviewing Nasdaq trading in Facebook; the news service noted that the commission "routinely" conducts such reviews.