initial public offerings (IPOs) trading on American exchanges

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Ally Financial (ALLY) began trading on the NYSE on 10 April 2014

  • The former mortgage unit of GM had its IPO today -- Ally Financial Inc. (ALLY) -- the largest IPO of 2014 so far.
Ally Financial Inc. (ALLY) shares fell 1.6% to $24.57 a share on Thursday during its first trading day after pricing its initial public offering at $25 a share. The offering price came in at the low end of the auto-loan company's $25 to $28 range. Ally has offered 95 million shares for sale. At the $25 price, the IPO hoped to raise $2.38 billion of capital for the U.S. Treasury Department, which wound down its remaining 37% stake in Ally after its $17.2 billion bailout of the company in 2008-2009. Ally shares are trading on the New York Stock Exchange with the ticker ALLY.

The IPO is considered the largest initial public offering this year and was underwritten by Citigroup Inc. (C ), Goldman Sachs Group & Co. (GS) , Morgan Stanley (MS) and Barclays PLC (BCS) .

Citi Traders Thomas Ferrigno (L ) and Christopher Fuchs await the IPO of Ally Financial on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange April 10, 2014.

Ally said it wants to increase its loans to used-car buyers to 50% from around 20% currently. Used-car loans also carry higher risk than new-car loans, and that raises a red flag for anyone who recalls how the flood of cheap money to subprime borrowers nearly collapsed the economy in 2008.

Others, including Ally, aren’t so concerned about another financial crisis, especially in the auto-loan business, where car sales and profit margins on subprime loans have both been going up.

There’s another interesting stat to back this view. According to a recent study by TransUnion, people are more likely to default on their credit cards or even their mortgage before they’ll miss a car payment. The reason? They need their car to get to work – or look for work.

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