$FB: Wait, Doesn’t the Ticker Symbol Tell Us Which Exchange Facebook Will Choose for Its IPO?

The NASDAQ and New York Stock Exchange would both love for Facebook to IPO its stock there. Last week, it was reported that Facebook had reserved the symbol FB for use “on either exchange,” which gave some business news readers pause. Wait a second, a two-letter symbol? Doesn’t that mean anything anymore?

It used to be that traders could tell at a glance whether a company was listed on the NASDAQ or NYSE: the former used a four character symbol convention and the latter allowed for one to three character symbols. But the vanity tickers became a bargaining chip in the battle for IPOs between the exchanges, which has grown increasingly heated. Most companies want a symbol that fits with their brand, like LNKD, AMZN, GRPN, AAPL, or NYT. Read More