Shares of the star Chinese online retailer began trading in 11:53 a.m. Friday. Initially priced at $68 a share, the IPO opened nearly a third higher, rocketing over $99 within the first few minutes. Volume on the IPO is surpassing the Twitter (TWTR) IPO. If current volume continues into the closing bell, volume may approach Facebook's (FB) record of 573 million shares.
TheStreet was on the scene for the event. Here are the shots of the five most memorable moments from the morning's prelude to the BABA trading action.
Leading up to the launch of trading, a beaming Jack Ma, Alibaba founder and CEO, was the center of attention, offering interviews to the crush of media, including many teams of reporters from China. A similar choir of smiling Alibaba employees crowded the balcony.
Traders crowd around the screens in anticipation of the start of Alibaba trading.
Glenn P. Carell of Barclays, the designated market maker for Alibaba shares, calls out the bid-ask. The crowd grew around Carell at Post 8 as the hour got closer to the start of trading. Here Ma, in the center with his back to the camera, watches the action.
CEO Ma rings the bell to mark the start of Alibaba trading.
The Big Board at the moment Alibaba stock began trading. Initially priced at $68, the stock opened at $92.70.
-- Photo-journalism by Adam Leverone in New York