The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Paul R. La Monica. Other than Time Warner, the parent of CNNMoney, Abbott Laboratories and AbbVie, La Monica does not own positions in any individual stocks.
How's this for meta? The chatter on social media (particularly on Twitter) seems to show that investors are a lot more excited about the Alibaba (BABA) initial public offering than they were for Twitter's (TWTR) IPO last November.
Igor Gonta, CEO of Market Prophit, a firm that analyzes social media posts and blogs and ranks people based on the performance of their commentary, called sentiment for Alibaba "phenomenal."
Gonta noted that the big difference between Alibaba and Twitter is that even the skeptics expect Alibaba to be a huge hit on its first day of trading. That's certainly the case with famed Silicon Valley investor Peter Thiel, who told CNN he wouldn't buy Alibaba, but he predicts a bounce on Friday.
"The Alibaba naysayers who say they are not believing the hype are still bullish," Gonta said. "This thing is just such a monster."
It's understandable why investors are enthusiastic. Alibaba is profitable and growing rapidly and its presence can be felt throughout pretty much the entire Chinese e-commerce sector. Alibaba is not just about potential like many IPOs often are.
One fan on Twitter thinks the stock will have a pretty big pop and cites numerology as a reason.
Don't laugh! My colleague Sophia Yan had a great story a few months ago where she spoke with fortune tellers in Hong Kong about the role luck could play in the IPO.
And that $80 target is actually conservative. Gonta said that there are some traders predicting that the stock could go as high as $100 on its first day.
Alibaba is also expected to have a big impact on other high-profile tech stocks. Some of the top tweeters tracked by Market Prophit, including traders going by the handle of @udgstocks and @sethque, are also hoping that Yahoo (YHOO) will continue to surge after Alibaba starts trading.
That's because Yahoo owns a more than 20% stake in Alibaba and will be selling a portion of its investment to use for a share buyback and possibly some of its own acquisitions.
Over on StockTwits, a platform dedicated solely to talking about investing, one trader suggested that Japan's SoftBank (SFTBY), which owns more than 35% of Alibaba and is not selling any shares, is also a good bet. A lift in SoftBank's value could also help Sprint (S), the struggling U.S. telecom that SoftBank controls.
Twitter's founding fathers became billionaires on paper when the social media company went public in November.
But Jack Dorsey and Evan Williams say they have no immediate plans to turn those paper gains in to cold, hard cash once they have the opportunity in May.
Under federal securities law, company insiders must wait six months before selling any shares following an initial public offering.
The so-called "lock up period" is designed to discourage MOREBen Rooney - Apr 14, 2014 12:01 PM ET
Maybe Ellen DeGeneres broke Twitter after all?
I'm being glib (that's for you Tom MOREPaul R. La Monica - Mar 27, 2014 1:29 PM ET
It's put up or shut up time for Twitter! The company will release its first "earnings" report since MOREPaul R. La Monica - Feb 4, 2014 1:32 PM ET
It's been a banner year for stocks. The Dow and S&P 500 have been in record territory since March, while the Nasdaq has been trading at its highest levels since 2000.
Though MOREHibah Yousuf - Dec 22, 2013 9:00 AM ET
Paul R. La Monica - Jun 14, 2013 11:56 AM ET
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings caused a stir last year after he revealed that Netflix's monthly online viewing had exceeded one billion hours on his Facebook page instead of a press release or public filing. That raised concerns about whether social media posts were in compliance with the Securities and Exchange Commission's Regulation Fair Disclosure (Regulation FD) rules.
But following an investigation prompted by Hastings' post, the SEC has decided it's MOREHibah Yousuf - Apr 2, 2013 4:24 PM ET
Groupon will report its fourth-quarter earnings in two weeks. Is the worst over for the troubled daily deals stock?
One analyst seems to think so. Arvind Bhatia of Sterne Agee upgraded Groupon (GRPN) from "neutral" to "buy" on Wednesday morning. Shares popped 5% on the news.
Groupon has enjoyed a stellar MOREPaul R. La Monica - Feb 13, 2013 12:15 PM ET
Facebook's (FB) stock is finally starting to live up to the lofty expectations that many investors had for it back in May when the company went public.
Shares of Facebook rose more than 8% Monday after analysts at Bernstein and BTIG upgraded the stock. Facebook has now rallied nearly 50% since touching a MOREPaul R. La Monica - Nov 26, 2012 12:44 PM ET
LinkedIn (LNKD) continues to be the preeminent social media stock. The company reported earnings after the closing bell Thursday that topped forecasts, sending shares up more than 1.5% Friday.
The stock pulled back as Friday wore on -- shares were up as much as 8% shortly after the market opened -- but they remained in the black even MOREPaul R. La Monica - Nov 2, 2012 12:38 PM ET
Not a member yet?Sign up now for a free account