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Twitter IPO: Trading opens at $45.10, nearly double expected share price

Twitter shares have begun trading at $45.10 (£28) – a significant jump from previous estimates and a sign that shares could rocket higher in the next few hours of trading as investors make bets on the micro-blogging site’s capacity for growth.

The price set for its New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) début amounts to an eye-watering leap of nearly 92 per cent from the initial public offering (IPO) price of $26 (£16.17) set on 6 November.

Such a jump sets the company's market value at a dizzy $25 billion (£15.5 billion) and makes it the largest opening day “pop” seen on the stock market in recent years.

Within minutes of opening trade, Twitter's stock price soared more than 80 per cent before falling slightly.

70 million shares will be traded, with their prices having already been raised in recent days from between $17 and $20 to a range of $23 to $25 and finally by another hop upwards to $26 . The most recent price hike blows all of those out the water.

The IPO had initially valued Twitter at $14.1 billion (£8.8 billion), but if underwriters exercise an over-allotment option that estimate could sky-rocket.

If, as many expect, the full over-allotment is exercised, Twitter could earn $2.1 billion (£1.3 billion), an amount that smashes both Google’s IPO in 2004 and Facebook’s $16 billion (£9.9 billion) IPO last year.

The price hike comes despite news that the San Francisco-based company revealed a long run of financial losses in its IPO prospectus, with this year not looking any brighter.

The popular social media site boasts over 230 million global users, but its ability to make profit is under serious question; a fact that hasn't seemed to deter potential investors today.