BizTerm Definition
Dutch Auction
Full Definition

An alternative to the traditional negotiated pricing process used by underwriters to set IPO prices. This method requires the underwriter to solicit bids from potential investors. Investors indicate the number of shares that they want and the price that they are willing to pay per share. Shares are then priced at the lowest clearing price. Allocations are made with priority given to the highest bidders, first with regard to bid price and then according to bidded share size. Because the only considerations taken into consideration for allocating shares is the bid price and shares, this pricing method does not discriminate between institutions and individuals with regard to allocations. W.R. Hambrecht is the only investment bank to employ this method and does so only through the use of an online bidding platform.


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