[March 18, 2008, update: Visa prices IPO at $44 a share, above expected range, raising a record $18 billion]
With thirty-minutes until the U.S. financial markets open, Mitch Goldstone, co-editor of WayTooHigh.com – The Credit Card Interchange Report is making the call that this week’s planned multi-billion dollar exit parachute for thousands of banks which own the giant credit card association will fizzle. The Visa IPO was planned as the nation’s most ambitious public offering, yet Visa Inc. is also facing the largest antitrust litigation too, one which in their own words could cause the credit card processing firm to become insolvent if we are successful.
This should now come as no surprise, especially after former Fed Chairman, Alan Greenspan described the financial mess as being the worst since WWII: “Greenspan Worns of Worst Crisis Since 1945.”
Obviously, the banks think differently, especially JP Morgan Chase, which is much more than a lead underwriter. Did you know that they are also a primary investor in Visa Inc and own one of the largest Visa and MasterCard electronic payment processors, Chase Paymentech?
“I had more than a feeling that the IPO was dead on arrival several weeks ago and have been calling attention to the reasons ever since,” said Goldstone, who is lead plaintiff in the merchant interchange class-action against Visa, MasterCard and major banks. On March 1st, WayTooHigh.com, which has been chronicling the interchange battle with daily news and commentary updates since early 2005, had this posting: Why the Visa Inc. IPO Might be Delayed for Shelved? Several other similar commentaries were subsequently published by WayTooHigh.com.
“Although there have been no other public reports which we read suggesting Visa Inc. might delay or cancel its IPO, we are not surprised. After all, the banks were equally in the dark when it came to not protecting themselves and shareholders by acting to thwart the sub-prime mortgage meltdown and other costly missteps,” said Goldstone.
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