Biggest IPOs In History

Initial public offerings - when companies first make their stocks available for sale to the public—can generate incredible wealth. Last month, in the midst of a faltering economy, the Agricultural Bank of China sold $19.2 billion dollars worth of stock on its first day available, making it the third largest IPO in history. On August 5, traders will be able to excercise options that would count towards the IPO, perhaps pushing the ABC to the top of this list. Until then, this is a list of the largest IPOs in history in U.S. dollars.


Who produces most diamonds?

Biggest diamond producers: A model's best friend.

Since 2000, the governments of over 75 countries have signed up to the Kimberley Process, which certifies that diamonds produced for foreign markets have not helped to fund violence. The Process has its critics, who point out that diamonds from the huge Marange mine in Zimbabwe have just been cleared for sale, despite much evidence of government-sponsored violence there.


World's Biggest Accidental Oil Spill

President Barack Obama meets Britain's prime minister, David Cameron, for talks in Washington on July 20th. The BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and allegations over the company's involvement in an “oil-for-terrorists” deal with Libya are likely to be on the agenda. BP is under pressure to satisfy government officials that the containment cap placed on the leaking well on July 15th is holding. Using the government task force's upper estimate, as many as 4.4m barrels of oil have escaped into the Gulf. This would make it the largest accidental oil spill in history (military attacks have created far bigger spills). Despite that, this quantity of refined oil is enough to keep America's cars and trucks on the road for just a quarter of a day. BP has spent almost $4 billion on clean-up costs to date, with the eventual total estimated at $39 billion.