7,218 $m
Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley holds tight at #54 for a second year in a row. Market share and profits alike were up this year, but what people will remember about Morgan Stanley in 2012 is their handling of Facebook’s IPO. Worldwide expectations built for over a year, which proved difficult to manage amid rampant speculation. Stock was primed to soar at USD $40 – 50 a share as the date neared. After it debuted at USD $38 a share, Morgan Stanley had to intervene and help stabilize the price by close of market that day. Competitors in the banking and investment industry contend that the American financial services giant mismanaged the IPO, setting the price of stock too high and selling too many shares to the public. A wave of lawsuits has followed, as well as increased scrutiny at the IPO process and adherence to regulations. The controversy will likely impact the brand’s strength in the marketplace, and its dominance as lead banker of tech IPOs in particular, but it will be difficult to measure for quite some time.