A 26% first-day plunge in the share price suggests investors were more doubtful about the delivery firm

Rishi Sunak backed the wrong horse. If the chancellor wanted to promote the London stock market as a warm and loving place for smart 21st-century companies, Deliveroo was the wrong firm to hail as “a true British tech success story”. A 26% first-day plunge in the share price for a £7.6bn float is a shambles.

Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, which were in charge of the listing operation, are primarily to blame. They got their numbers hideously wrong. As the price range for the float was lowered this week, the investment banks pumped out a misleading message that the order-book for shares was “fully covered”. Well, it obviously wasn’t covered by the right people in the right quantities. Hedge funds, the marginal buyers in these situations, smelled weakness and sold at the first opportunity.

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