IPOs Keep Coming in September


Initial public offerings (IPOs) are running at their quickest pace in years. Have you been watching?

Volume at the end of August was already close to the total for all of 2017, according to data from ClickIPO. In fact, if you include Spotify’s (SPOT)’s unusual direct listing in April, we’d already be well ahead of last year.

What’s driving the boom? First is the bull market in stocks. Second, there’s a backlog of disruptive companies needing to come to market. That’s especially true in cloud computing, health-care innovation and Chinese technology.

One of the hottest names recently was Tilray (TLRY). The Canadian cannabis firm went public for just $17 in July and then went on a rampage through last week as investors looked for exposure to Canada’s looming marijuana legalization. More recently, sellers have stepped in.

Other health-care related names are holding their gains. Kiniska Pharmaceuticals (KNSA), for example, is up about 75 percent in the last month. Kidney-drug developer Tricida (TCDA) has risen 37 percent over the same period. Avrobio (AVRO), whose technology allows patient-level customization of medicines, has gained 29 percent.

Three big names stand out this month. Chinese electric-car maker Nio (NIO) went public for $6.26 on September 11, and roughly doubled a few days later. Now it’s chopping back closer to its initial price level.

Elanco Animal Health (ELAN), a maker of veterinary medicines for livestock and pets, went public as a spin-off from drug maker Eli Lilly (LLY). It issued its shares at $24, the top of its proposed range, and then shot up another $10 after hitting the market.

The other noteworthy stock would be Farfetch (FTCH), a London-based clothing bazaar that provides hundreds of small boutiques with access to shoppers around the world. FTCH has risen about 50 percent from its $20 pricing level.

In conclusion, IPOs continue to draw interest. Keep an eye on Market Insights for more news and visit our partner ClickIPO for access to the market.

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David Russell is VP of Market Intelligence at TradeStation Group. Drawing on two decades of experience as a financial journalist and analyst, his background includes equities, emerging markets, fixed-income and derivatives. He previously worked at Bloomberg News, CNBC and E*TRADE Financial. Russell systematically reviews countless global financial headlines and indicators in search of broad tradable trends that present opportunities repeatedly over time. Customers can expect him to keep them apprised of sector leadership, relative strength and the big stories – especially those overlooked by other commentators. He’s also a big fan of generating leverage with options to limit capital at risk.