A-LO Industries had a big day planned on Wall Street, but it didn't anticipate just how momentous Monday, Oct. 27, would be.
The producer of advertising specialty items was listing its stock on the New York Stock Exchange for the first time that day, after five years on the NASDAQ board. To celebrate the event, the Niles, Ill.-based company blocked off traffic in front of the Stock Exchange at 7:30 a.m. and held a street fair.
It passed out free food and coffee in mugs bearing its logo. Its sports marketing unit arranged for athletes like Cecil Fielder and Walt Frazier to sign autographs. When rain started, it passed out hundreds of umbrellas with its logo. HA-LO chairman Lou Weisbach rang the bell to start the day's trading (shown here).
Then things stopped going as planned. The market fell 554 points. HA-LO's stock dipped less than 2 points, though, and rebounded the next day.
Said Michael Nemlich, HA-LO vice president: "I think we staged a great event that helped traders take their minds off what was going on inside. Everyone loves to get free stuff and a pretzel." --Scott Hume