Jun 1, 2020 - Economy & Business

A busy week for IPOs despite upheaval from protests and pandemic

illustration of $100 bill with arrow pointing up
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

This week is expected to be the busiest for U.S. IPOs since February, with Warner Music leading a group of four companies that could raise over $3 billion.

Why it matters: This shouldn't be happening, under any traditional rubric for how markets work.

What's happening: American passions over race and policing are inflamed, with many neighborhoods literally in flames.

  • Over 104,000 Americans are dead from the ongoing pandemic, with infection rates rising in several large states.
  • Tens of millions of Americans are unemployed.
  • And, just for good measure, China is threatening to renege on part of the phase one trade deal.

Yet, stocks opened flat, prompting Axios Markets editor Dion Rabouin to declare: "Not even God himself could sink this market rally."

  • And, again, there's no indication that bankers are reconsidering the week's IPO slate, which in addition to Warner Music includes Legend Biotech, Pliant Therapeutics, and ZoomInfo.
  • Economists often warn not to conflate stock market moves with real-time economic realities, but this decoupling feels extreme.

If you know what's coming next, or even have a strong sense of it, you're lying to yourself.

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