In brief: Twitter sets IPO price at $26
NEW YORK – Twitter has set a price of $26 for its initial public offering of stock, which means the company’s shares can begin trading today on the New York Stock Exchange.
The price values Twitter at more than $18 billion based on its outstanding stock, options and restricted stock that will be available after the IPO.
Twitter Inc. had originally set a price range of $17 to $20 per share for its IPO, but analysts expected that to go higher. The company raised the range on Monday to $23 to $25 per share.
The San Francisco-based short messaging service is offering 70 million shares in the IPO, plus an option to buy another 10.5 million. It is set to begin trading this morning under the symbol “TWTR.”
Blockbuster stores to close
Blockbuster, the video rental chain that has been pummeled by the rise of digital and on-demand entertainment, said it will close its 300 remaining U.S. stores by early January.
The Blockbuster By Mail service will end in mid-December.
Blockbuster’s owner, Dish Network Corp., will keep the licensing rights to the Blockbuster brand and its video library. Dish said it will focus on the Blockbuster streaming and on-demand services currently offered to customers.
Tesla faces battery shortage
Electric car maker Tesla Motors has a battery problem. It doesn’t have enough of them.
That’s one reason the company’s shares fell 14.5 percent Wednesday, their sharpest drop in almost two years.
CEO Elon Musk on Tuesday blamed a shortage of lithium-ion battery cells for trouble meeting demand for Tesla’s lone vehicle, the Model S. Some cars that could have been sold in North America were diverted to Europe to satisfy waiting customers, Musk said on a conference call after Tesla released third-quarter earnings.
There won’t be any relief until next year, when a deal to get more batteries from supplier Panasonic kicks in, he said.
Google speaks about barge
Internet giant Google said it is exploring using a large barge as an interactive learning center.
A statement released Wednesday from Google’s press center may help end weeks of speculation about the purpose of structures on two barges, one being built in the San Francisco Bay, another off Portland, Maine.
Google said “although it’s still early days and things may change,” the company is exploring using the barge as an interactive space where people can learn about new technology.
Google did not specify in the statement if it was referring to both barges or, if just one, which one, and the firm did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Wells Fargo settles claims
Wells Fargo will pay $335 million to resolve claims that it misled Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac about risky mortgage securities that it sold them prior to the housing collapse.
The San Francisco-based bank says in a regulatory filing Wednesday that it settled the claims with Fannie Mae in its first quarter and Freddie Mac in its third quarter. The settlements with the Federal Housing Finance Agency organizations totaled about $335 million.
The agency sued 18 financial institutions in 2011 over their sales of mortgage securities to Fannie and Freddie. These types of securities soured after the housing bubble burst in 2007, losing billions in value.
JPMorgan Chase agreed in October to pay $5.1 billion to settle similar claims.