Sunday, April 15, 2012
Jobs Bill and Facebook
I am worried that there is some connection between the recently passed Jobs bill and the Facebook IPO. Facebook has been the poster child for huge IPOs that give preference to insiders. Facebook was limited by the old restrictions of privately held companies. It's not clear whether the new Jobs bill will change its situation. It may be too big, maybe not. It's already in the situation where the number of shareholders of record is limited, but the actual number of shareholders is much higher. Goldman Sachs counts as one shareholder, but it can hold shares for its preferred clients, raising the total well beyond 500 or whatever the limit was. Even if this law does not directly affect Facebook, it will affect new IPOs, and while it may marginally aid new businesses, it will enormously aid rich Wall Street insiders. At the same time, as the NYT article points out, it may increase the risks of bad investments in questionable companies by small, unsophisticated investors. I would like to know what Elizabeth Warren thinks about the bill. Is it good for America? Is it good for the middle class (or what's left of it)? Or is it just good for the super rich, especially those who live in Silicon Valley? Unfortunately I do not trust Obama to do what is best for the middle class (and the country). He has sold out to the super rich.