UPS Goes To IPO Heaven

United Parcel Service traded at a 37 percent premium amid blistering volume Wednesday as the 92-year-old company's whopping $5.5 billion initial public offering rocketed out of the gate.

The nation's largest-ever initial public offering was trading at 68 1/2 on big volume of 52 million shares in recent trades. The stock jumped from its offering price of $50 with an open of $65.

The delivery titan -- which joins the ranks of the many ".com" Wall Street rookies whose wares it ships -- priced its 109.4 million shares above its already heightened range of $47 to $49, a sign of strong investor interest.

Lee Klaskow of MCM CorporateWatch predicted slightly less churn for UPS, compared to typical Internet IPOs.

"The shares aren't going to be flipped as much because it's a blue chip company," he said. "Not many companies like this come along, so people will tend to hold onto it."


CBS
United Parcel Service Chairman Jim Kelly poses on a delivery motorcycle outside the New York Stock Exchange with NYSE Chairman Richard Grasso

Last week, UPS had stated an estimated range of $47 to $49, 23 percent higher than its earlier $36 to $42 level with underwriter Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

J. Michael Pinson, senior analyst, MarketMavens.com, predicts an open of $130 to $200 per share for Atlanta-based UPS.

"Do not let this price scare you off," he said in a note to investors. "I suspect that UPS could be a 'Pile on the Wagon' IPO where just about everybody will appear to purchase and hold this stock."

The money raised would handily eclipse the previous No. 1 debut in the $3.96 billion IPO from Conoco, which sold 172.3 million shares at $23 each in its U.S. debut last year.

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