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SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Facebook Inc director Peter Thiel sold roughly $400 million worth of shares in the Internet social networking company last week, cashing out most of his stake, according to a regulatory filing.

Thiel sold his shares on Thursday and Friday at average prices ranging between $19.27 and $20.69 per share after the end of the first lockup, which barred early investors and insiders from selling shares following the initial public offering.

The sales, in which Thiel sold roughly 20 million Facebook shares, were conducted as a result of a trading plan that Thiel entered into on May 18, according to the filing.

Thiel, who co-founded PayPal and was among Facebook's earliest backers, still owns roughly 5.6 million shares of Facebook. A spokesman for Thiel declined to comment on the sales.

More than 1.4 billion additional shares held by early investors and Facebook employees are set to become available for trading by year's end, as additional post-IPO lockup restrictions are lifted.

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The best news for Facebook is they had their inflated IPO so the company got a great cash infusion. The dumping in the secondary market isn't their concern (except to the extent that their personal fortunes are wrapped up in the mess).

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sounds like he should have sold many weeks ago. Facebook's stock sucks!

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sounds like he should have sold many weeks ago. Facebook's stock sucks!

There was a block on him trading until Thursday. He sold the bulk of his holdings as soon as he was legally allowed to do so.

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sounds like he should have sold many weeks ago. Facebook's stock sucks!

Did you not read the article? He wasn't allowed to.

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I'd bail from that sinking ship too.

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If the director dumps most of his stock at the earliest opportunity, what does that say about his confidence in the company's future?

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If the director dumps most of his stock at the earliest opportunity, what does that say about his confidence in the company's future?

Not a lot!

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If the director dumps most of his stock at the earliest opportunity, what does that say about his confidence in the company's future?

He kept 5.6 million shares. He probably just wanted the cash now.

Granted, that implies that he doesn't expect them to go up any time soon, but I think everyone knows that.

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He has his own investment fund and he'll probably be using this money to invest in other young startups! You have to remember this guy gave Facebook $500,000 and in return got a couple billion dollars. Granted, he's only withdrawn a small amount. I think this is good for Facebook, their stock has decreased but eventually will increase with newer products that will be released. They definitely are cooking something there. They have the original iphone designers, the dutch sofa team, a lot of ex google and apple experienced engineers. I think Facebook's biggest mistake was going public too soon. They should have released a promising product such as their google ads competitor that they were working on. Atleast, investors would have had hope for the short while in the company's ability to make more money.

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He kept 5.6 million shares. He probably just wanted the cash now.

It's a rather cautious approach. He wants money now in case the stock price collapses but doesn't want to sell too many of his shares in case they increase in value. Still, it's unusual for a director to sell such a large amount of shares at the earliest opportunity - it does imply a lack of faith in the company.

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It's a rather cautious approach. He wants money now in case the stock price collapses but doesn't want to sell too many of his shares in case they increase in value. Still, it's unusual for a director to sell such a large amount of shares at the earliest opportunity - it does imply a lack of faith in the company.

Actually, he had agreed with Facebook to sell this amount shares before it went public. So the stay period just ended, and he was now allowed to follow through on his earlier deal of selling the specified amount of shares.

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Actually, he had agreed with Facebook to sell this amount shares before it went public. So the stay period just ended, and he was now allowed to follow through on his earlier deal of selling the specified amount of shares.

I never suggested otherwise. But I'm sure he was aware that the valuation of Facebook was excessive and that the company didn't have the revenue growth necessary to sustain such a price. Given what happened to MySpace I'm not surprised that he'd want to pull out such a large amount of money.

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He's taking a cautionary approach. I approve.

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