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IPOs: A Diverse Group Pricing—but Beware!

Simon Smith | Vetta | Getty Images

Several IPOs price in the next two days.

The big one is Workday (ticker: WDAY), pricing Thursday for Friday, brought to you by Dave Duffield, the founder of PeopleSoft. It has the magic word: cloud-based computing, this time for human resource needs (managing employee data, in plain English). They've even raised the price target: 22.75 million shares at $24-$26, originally $21-$24. Not profitable after eight years, but revenues are increasing fast.

But the one that will likely get the press is Realogy (ticker: RLGY), pricing tonight, a roll-up of a bunch of real-estate companies like Century 21.

A lot of debt, but they are cleverly placing themselves as a play on the real estate recovery. Watch this: 40 million shares with price talk of $23-$27, but this could surprise on the upside.

And after other real-estate plays Zillow and Trulia did well, you can't blame them for being optimistic.

Another one with interest pricing tonight is Shutterstock, which does commercial stock photography, pricing 4.3 millions shares at $13-$15.

Finally, two small biotechs are pricing tonight: Kythera Biopharmaceuticals (ticker: KYTH) and Intercept Pharmacecuticals (ticker: ICPT).

Two points about the IPO market:

1) the markets have been weaker in the last few days. Not much, but IPOs are very sensitive to market conditions. Last week Dave & Buster's withdrew their IPO due to market conditions.

2) Haircuts for IPOs: welcome to the post-Facebook world. You see what they did to the two IPOs that started trading today?

Amira Nature Foods (ticker: ANFI), priced at $10, but the price talk was $13.50, closed at $9.58. Ambarella priced at $6, but the price talk was $9-$11, closed at $6.06.

Last week, Lifelock priced at $9, well below the price talk of $9.50-$11.50, and closed today at $7.72.

"They're being priced like secondaries," one trader told me. "Marginal deals have to be brought out at deep discounts or they won't get done."

—By CNBC’s Bob Pisani

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  • A CNBC reporter since 1990, Bob Pisani covers Wall Street from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

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