Yahoo Still Standing After Closing Bell

    May 5, 2008

Ben Franklin might not have agreed, but after Microsoft withdrew its offer, the drop in Yahoo’s stock became as certain as death and taxes.  The only surprise was that, after a full day of trading, the drop was more of a dip than a plunge.

Exactly $4.30, or 15.00 percent, is what got knocked off every share.  Since Yahoo was below $20 before Microsoft intervened, its closing price of $24.37 makes it seem like investors are coming out of this whole affair at least slightly ahead.

Yahoo Stock
 Yahoo’s Stock After Microsoft’s Retreat

As for why only a small slide occurred, there are several explanations.  First, Steve Ballmer may have done Yahoo a huge favor by announcing his decision on a Saturday.  Had the same thing happened while markets were open, panic could have set in, and a much bigger fall would likely have resulted.

Also, as Rich Ord pointed out earlier today, there’s the possibility that investors have placed some faith in Yahoo.  The company tossed out a number of interesting upgrades after its independence was put on the line, and there’s still more stuff on the horizon.

Then one has to consider the likelihood that Microsoft will return.  A number of people are probably hanging around in case that happens.  And a continued corporate interest would fit with Ballmer not killing Yahoo’s stock – he wouldn’t want to make shareholders too unhappy.

Microsoft, for its part, did okay today.  The stock was up to start and dropped from there, but the loss of 0.55 percent with which it wound up is by no means embarrassing.