Trading app Robinhood has applied to go public

The American brokerage application Robinhood, which allows individuals to trade free of charge and has seen its popularity grow since the start of the pandemic, officially filed a file with the American stock market regulator on Thursday July 1 to enter Wall Street. The group, without specifying a timetable or the amount it hopes to withdraw from this operation, indicates in the document that it has seen its turnover jump by 245% in 2020, to 959 million dollars,

His fame grew even more in the first quarter, with sales up 309%. At the end of March, the application had 18 million users who held a total of $80 billion in assets, compared to 7.2 million a year earlier. Founded in 2013, the company has set itself the mission of “democratizing finance for all” by offering an easy-to-use tool for anyone who wants to bet money on the financial markets.

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Already in vogue before the pandemic, the app took off during the lockdowns, thanks mainly to millennials with the time and money to speculate. It has also benefited since the beginning of the year from the speculative frenzy around shares such as those of the GameStop video game store chain or AMC cinemas, especially generated by individual investors. His methods sometimes earn him reprimands from the authorities accusing the application of presenting the sometimes complex financial bets as a game to target young and inexperienced investors.

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Robinhood, as if to clear the way ahead of its IPO, on Wednesday agreed to pay a $70 million fine to financial regulator Finra for causing harm to “millions of customers who received from the company false or misleading information and millions of customers who experienced systemic outages in March 2020.”

The company, which employs around 2,100 people, plans to list on the Nasdaq platform under the symbol “HOOD” and reserve 20% to 35% of the shares placed on the market for its users. The group managed to make a net profit of $7 million in 2020. However, it suffered a net loss of $1.4 billion in the first quarter due to accounting adjustments of $1.5 billion. Its operating profit amounted to $115 million over the period.

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