They were down less than 1% to $44.30 at 12:45 p.m.in New York Friday, giving the business a market valuation of $74 billion.
Ride-hailing giant Uber failed to take off like fellow tech peers when it started trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Trade tensions between the US and China are weighing on investors' minds after President Donald Trump boosted tariffs on $200 billion in goods from China.
"We are willing to give quite a bit of rope and leeway on current profitability if you can show how you're going to get there", said Jordan Stuart, a portfolio manager at Federated Kaufmann who often purchases companies' shares during an IPO.
Still, Uber shares extended losses into the close, even as USA equities stabilized on renewed optimism that an all-out trade war can be averted.More news: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez name-drops Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren for potential 2020 endorsement
Uber wanted to play the IPO conservatively after seeing the stock of rival Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT) fall more than 20% from its $72 IPO price over the last six weeks.
However, it is uncommon for a company with such a high profile to stumble out of the gate.
Uber's inauguration was no doubt closely watched by the cavalcade of IPO hopefuls lining up to list in 2019.
He stressed that Uber is not a fair-weather company and keeps moving forward in tough and easy environments.
Lyft, meanwhile, followed its bigger rival down Friday, nearly US$21 below where it sold the stock just six weeks ago.More news: This season full of wonderful moments, says Liverpool manager Klopp
As Gizmodo's Brian Merchant writes, driver dissatisfaction is baked into the cake of both Uber and Lyft's business models: "Treating drivers as replaceable, disposable placeholders for algorithms is finally taking its toll".
Uber was the biggest of a group of Silicon Valley startups that have spent years raising money in private rounds at record prices. The San Francisco-based company lost $3.04 billion last year on an operating basis on revenue of $11.3 billion, bringing total operating losses over the past three years to more than $10 billion, according to filings. It adjusted losses of $1.8 billion, an improvement over losses of $2.6 billion in 2017, according to its IPO filing.
Kennedy points out that unlike Facebook, however, Uber hasn't been turning profits.
"The most important sort of statistic to look at is bookings, because that reflects essentially what people are paying for the service", he said.
Now that Uber's long-awaited IPO has happened, the focus moves to the company's business and its prospects. "We found a set of investors who are long-term oriented, that believe in our vision", Khosrowshahi said. "Now we have to execute to make sure that the bet that they made on us is a great bet". Lyft shares hit a post-IPO low of $53 today, putting them 26% below their initial offering price. The company will raise roughly $8 billion with a market value of $82 billion, falling short of what investors once hoped would be a $100 billion valuation.More news: Yemen port withdrawal to begin on Saturday, UN and Houthis say
Despite the rocky debut, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said he was thrilled to complete the IPO, adding that the $8.1 billion that Uber raised in the process would be crucial to its future growth plans.