Levi Strauss public again, stock surges
NEW YORK — Shares of Levi Strauss surged after it began trading as public company for the second time in the clothing brand’s 166-year history.
The shares were priced Wednesday at $17 and opened for trading Thursday at $22.22, a gain of 31 percent. At the close, Levi rose 32 percent to $22.41.
In a rare move, the New York Stock Exchange suspended its “no jeans” policy to commemorate the offering, transforming the floor from suits and ties into a sea of blue denim, with its traders sporting jeans and denim jackets.
Investors said the strong demand for shares in Levi, which owns the Dockers and Denizen brands, is a good sign for other companies eyeing an IPO this year. Ride-hailing company Lyft will sell shares to the public next week, and larger rival Uber is expected to go public later this spring.