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Harris & Harris Group


was trading lower on above-average volume after the company priced a public offering at a 14% discount to Monday's closing price.

Harris & Harris said it has priced a follow-on public offering of 4.25 million shares of its common stock at a price of $4.75 per share. The venture capital company said it expects net proceeds, after underwriting discounts and estimated offering expenses, of approximately $18.65 million, or $21.5 million if the over-allotment option is exercised in full by the underwriter.

Harris & Harris shares were falling sharply, down 61 cents, or 11%, to $4.94. Earlier in the session, the stock touched an intraday low of $4.80. More than 1.2 million shares changed hands in the first two hours of trading Tuesday, compared to the stock's 50-day average daily volume of 112,000, according to the

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Harris & Harris has a 24.8 million-share float with a short interest float of 5.4% as of Sept. 10, according to Yahoo! Finance. Only 4% of the company's shares are held by insiders with another 30% owned by institutions.

Some investors posted on Internet message boards that they were dismayed by the price of the offering, saying Harris & Harris is hurting existing shareholders by raising equity. Those investors pointed out that Harris & Harris shares have dropped more than 20% in the last week in order for the company to raise approximately $20 million.

More bearish investors argued it was time again to short shares, especially after shares ran from $5.61 at the start of September to $6.74 on Sept. 23 without any particular fundamental reason. Other posters said the company's stock is simply returning to the range it used to trade at 13 months ago.

Read more about today's high-volume stocks like Magnetek in earlier "Pump Up the Volume" posts


-- Written by Robert Holmes in New York