Mutual Funds Eying Facebook: Who Will Bite?

By Julie D. Andrews 

Neither Google nor LinkedIn went public at a time when it was crystal-clear how much their companies would earn and when.

That said, Google shares, which ran roughly $100 apiece at the time of its initial public offering, currently trade at $615. Shares of LinkedIn started trading at $45 in May 2011 and nowadays run about $112.

These are kinds of facts many mutual fund managers — especially those whose funds are comprised of technology stocks or target the large-capital-growth-stock segment of the market that Facebook will join — are now weighing as they considering adding stock in the social network to their portfolios, AP reported.

Pricing of shares was initially expected to fall within the range of $28 to $35 each, according to a regulatory filing Facebook released, with the definitive price schedule to be announced on May 17, one day before the IPO. There were reports late last week, however, that the price range could increase.

Morgan Stanley’s Focus Growth Fund (AMOAX) recently contained 3.6 percent Facebook stocks in its portfolio, while a reported 19 of T. Rowe Price funds and more than 30 Fidelity Investments funds, such as Contrafund (FCNTX), include Facebook shares, but all containing less than 1 percent.

Pax World Balanced (PAXWX) and Thomas Vandeventer of Tocqueville Opportunity (TOPPX), funds from smaller companies, have also purchased shares on secondary markets.

Readers: Would whether a portfolio contained Facebook shares influence which fund(s) you went with?

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