Friday, May 18, 2012

What We’re Reading, 5/18/12

Happy Friday, Tumblr! Every morning, we poll the staff and round up their favorite economic, financial and political reads of the day. Today’s list is getting up a little late, courtesy the Facebook IPO — but since the weekend’s almost here, please cut your curator some slack.

On our radar today: Facebook, Facebook and … more Facebook! If we played the Facebook IPO drinking game, we’d all be pretty buzzed.

"Facebook Falls Near to IPO Price," by Jacob Bunge, Jenny Strasburg and Ryan Dezember (Wall Street Journal). It would have been hard for Facebook’s first day of trading to live up to the hype that proceeded it. But even by lower standards, this launch felt a little “meh” — shares opened at $42 and closed at $38.16, just a bit above their Thursday offering price. 

"For Average Investors, Long Odds on a Big Facebook Payday," by Nathaniel Popper (New York Times). The little guys who got in on Facebook probably shouldn’t expect big returns. (Hey, that’s what we said about IPOs!)

"How Mark Zuckerberg Hacked the Valley," by Brad Stone and Douglas MacMillan (Businessweek). Facebook hasn’t just changed the way we use the Internet, keep up with friends and creep on old acquaintances. The social network’s unconventional business strategies may also change the way tech start-ups operate. In the words of Stone and Macmillan, “Zuckerberg and his crew have made a series of high-risk moves … that were far more daring than wearing a hoodie to an IPO roadshow.”

"Facebook’s Growth and Reach at a Glance," by Avie Schneider and Melanie Taube (NPR). The infographic gurus at NPR have come up with a fascinating look at Facebook’s financial history. Fun fact: None of the cities with the most Facebook users are in the United States. 

"Facebook IPO Makes Zuckerberg Richer Than Google Founders," by David De Jong and Devon Pendleton (Bloomberg). Mark Zuckerberg is now the 29th-richest person on Earth — a ranking that makes your friendly curator wonder who the heck cracks the top 10. The company’s other co-founders, Dustin Moskovitz and Eduardo Saverin, will also become billionaires.

And in other (Facebook) news: PC Mag rounds up 10 very strange things that cost the same amount as Facebook stock and the Huffington Post has launched a “Tech Bubble Death Watch" — worth it for the jokes alone.