Nymex IPO Looks Stellar

The exchange prices its shares at $59, well above the projected range.
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The New York Mercantile Exchange

looks like it could be one stellar IPO, as the commodities exchange priced its shares Thursday night well above the projected range.

Nymex Holdings

, the parent company of the 134-year-old commodities and futures exchange that specializes in energy trading, priced its shares at $59 in a 6.5 million share initial public offering that raised $384 million.

Earlier this week, Nymex said it expected to price shares at between $54 and $57. But that was a 10% increase over an earlier projection. Nymex had boosted the price range for it shares because of heated demand from institutional investors.

Even with the IPO pricing above the range, most on Wall Street expect the stock soar in its first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Many expect the IPO to be one of the better performers of the year.

The Nymex IPO is benefiting from the strong performance of other exchanges that have gone public in recent years such as the

Chicago Mercantile Exchange

(CME) - Get Report

and the

InterContinental Exchange

(ICE) - Get Report

. And the Nymex is one of the last big exchanges to go public.

Nymex shares will trade under the ticker symbol NMX. With about 89 million shares outstanding, Nymex will begin the trading Friday with a market cap of $5.25 billion. But it should be much higher by day's end.

The strong demand for the Nymex IPO is a stark contrast to the tepid response Wall Street gave Thursday to

Hertz

(HTZ) - Get Report

rental car giant. Shares of Hertz, which is backed by a consortium of private equity firms, rose a modest 5% in its first day of trading to close at $15.72. But the stock priced Wednesday night at $15 a share, which was below the projected $16 to $18 range.