Trader Talk

Another day, another weak IPO: new issues still struggle

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Four initial public offerings (IPOs) prided overnight, with mixed results. The takeaway is that the sheen is clearly off medical and biotech names.

On the NYSE, Chinese mobile security app company Cheetah Mobile (CMCM) priced 12 million shares at $14, toward the high end of its $12.50—$14.50 range. That's a positive sign for Chinese tech, especially ahead of Alibaba's IPO.

There have been 4 Chinese IPOs this year, and three of them are already trading below their offering price, the exception being Weibo. That went public April 16 at $17 after the deal size was cut, and was up only 3 percent from that price at the close yesterday.

Petroleum transporter Dorian LPG (LPG) priced 7.1 million shares at $19, in the middle of the $18—$20 range. Energy IPOs are working: Gaslog worked yesterday.

On the NASDAQ, medical device company K2M Group Holdings (KTWO) priced 8.8 million shares at $15, below the $16—$18 range. Alder BioPharmaceuticals (ALDR) priced 8 million shares at $10, below the $13—$15 range. Four more are pricing between now and early Friday.

With all that said, there are still no signs of a rebound in IPOs. Renaissance Capital IPO ETF (IPO), a basket of roughly 60 IPOs, closed at its low for the year yesterday.


Pisani's markets: IPOs on hiatus?

1) A number of Federal Reserve speakers today, including Fed Governor Daniel Tarullo. In a February 25th speech, he commented that small tech stock valuations appeared stretched.

It was a prescient observation: big momentum small tech and internet stocks began a decline shortly after that speech. The Global X Social Media ETF is down 22 percent this year, the First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index ETF is down almost 12 percent.

It was interesting that Yellen also made a brief comment that small cap-stocks were showing signs of possible overvaluation.

2) Intercontinental Exchange, which now owns the New York Stock Exchange, reported a small beat on earnings and revenues. One positive surprise were listing fees, which are improving, which reflects the success the Big Board has had in competing against NASDAQ, particularly for tech listings. Listings are the gift that keeps on giving, year after year. The next important event will be the spinoff of Euronext, expected sometime this quarter.

--By CNBC's Bob Pisani