Alright, so you’ve seen Google’s earnings, but what about that stock split they announced? Here’s what’s going on, briefly, and I hope, simply.
Google is going to issue a stock dividend to all shareholders. For every share of voting class A or B stock (the stock that currently exists in the hands of normal investors, and employees/founders) that an individual owns, they will receive a single share of the new class C stock. This share has no voting rights.
Therefore, every investor will have the number of shares that they own double, effecting a 2 for 1 split. Google noted that this is something that has long been requested by investors. As the company’s stock is over $600 in today’s trading, a split is reasonable, and may help diversify the firm’s investor makeup.
Google promised to release a filing in the near future that will contain all the critical details. Finally, Google has instituted a program for Eric, Larry, and Sergey that will keep their voting and economic rights in line. They call it a ‘stapling agreement.’ Essentially, it means that those three can’t dump class C shares, leaving them with a decreased economic interest in the firm, and a proportionally larger voting interest. This is to keep the system fair, in other words.
Google’s new class C stock will trade on the NASDAQ under a different ticker symbol than the company’s normal stock, which trades under the symbol ‘GOOG.’ If you have any more questions, or want a bit more information, head here and scroll to the postscript.