Dear Facebook investors: Robert Greifeld is sorry you lost a bunch of money. And he'd really like you to leave him alone now.
Greifeld -- chief executive of the NASDAQ OMAX Group, which operates the NASDAQ stock exchange -- told reporters on Wednesday that he and his staff "owe the industry an apology" for Facebook's glitch-riddled initial public offering on May 18, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Meanwhile, Greifeld reportedly told a friend over the weekend that he's looking forward to having this whole thing blow over.
"I can't wait for my life to get back to normal," Greifeld confided to a friend from the posh links at the Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey this weekend, according to a Fox Business report, which cites anonymous sources. "I can't wait for this storm to pass."
That's not a direct quote of BP chief executive Tony Hayward's famous gaffe following the 2010 Gulf oil spill -- "I'd like my life back" -- but it's pretty darn close.
On the other hand, NASDAQ is taking steps to address complaints that it dropped the ball with the Facebook debut. On Wednesday, the company announced that it would be paying out $40 million in cash and rebates to brokers who ran into technical problems while trading Facebook stock the day it went public.
Facebook's much-anticipated IPO was marred by delays and blackouts as the stock went public. NASDAQ was reportedly unprepared for the volume of people trading that day, in part due to the use of high-frequency trading computers.
"Clearly we didn't succeed here," Greifeld said of NASDQ's spotty performance that day, according to the WSJ.
NASDAQ will offer about $26 million to brokers in the form of trading discounts, according to reports, and offer another $13.7 million in cash. Reuters reports that the plan to offer trading discounts has troubled employees at other exchanges, since they fear brokers will be more likely to use NASDAQ if they can do so at a lower price.
Facebook's stock, which closed on Wednesday at $26.81 -- almost 30 percent below its first-day closing value of $38.23 -- has proven to be a bad buy for most retail investors, many of whom are now suing Facebook and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg for what they say was a failure to adequately disclose information about the a projected fall-off in the company's revenues.
As they've sank lower and lower over the last three weeks, Facebook shares have even turned out to be something of a bum deal for wealthy and well-connected investors who bought shares in advance of the May 18 public unveiling.
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