As expected, Google isn't coming cheap.

But, as the search engine giant's initial public offering fast approaches, it's still up for debate as to whether its stock will be moderately expensive or wildly so.

Sure, the company's stock is looking pricey, even compared with some richly valued peers. On the other hand, investors are known to pay up for the privilege of owning part of a valuable brand -- no matter how hard it may be to put a price on a brand that's become nearly synonymous with searching on the Internet.

"It's like trying to put a value on Coke," says Jefferies analyst Youssef Squali.

As difficult as the brand challenge may be, Monday's release of new information at least offers some figures for investors to mull over. The company shared broad guidelines about the size and the pricing of its IPO, along with second-quarter financial information. In doing so, Google has offered potential investors more data on which they can base estimates of the company's earnings and valuation.

But those numbers were only part of the news Monday for Google, which suffered intermittent outages on its flagship site Monday, and which readied a "road show" of pre-IPO presentations to institutional investors.

By setting a range of $108 to $135 per share in its offering document for the 24.6 million shares that the company and insiders will be selling, Google has given investors and analysts a starting point for judging the company's offering price -- a price that will ultimately be set by an auction process.

That starting point, however, gives rise to other questions, such as to which company or companies Google should be compared, to what degree comparisons fail, and on what financial measure any assessment should be made.

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