Up Year for Public PE Stocks? Ummm… Never Mind

Last Thursday, I suggested that 2009 might be a rebound year for publicly-traded private equity stocks. Not because of improvements in the underlying financials, but because such securities had experienced major gains during the year’s first five trading days. Really the type of anecdotal daydreaming that would never have seen the light of day before the advent of blogs, and the public markets are already swatting it away.

An updated look at public private equity shows that most issuers have flattened back out over the past two trading days.

Blackstone Group stock, for example, rose from $7.14 on market open January 2, and got up to $8.10 on January 6. Now it’s back down to $7.28. American Capital began the year at $3.68 per share, rocketed up to $7.31 and today finished back down at $5.81. Fortress Investment Group began at $1.27 per share, but has been stuck at around $2.25 for three days running. Allied Capital, which hit $4.80 per share on January 6, but hasn’t gotten back up above $4.50. And we’ve seen similar charts for both 3i Group (London) and KKR Financial (debt affiliate of buyout firm KKR).

Just as with before, this is a virtually insignificant sample size. But unlike before, it scratches away at the silver lining so many people are looking for.