(Update) According to Dow Jones News, USB sold 139 million shares at $18 per share. See the news at WSJ.
(Original) When I say cheap, I meant in relative terms.
My benchmark: Buffett endorsed 2 banks in Berkshire annual shareholder meeting: US Bank (NYSE: USB) and Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC). Many people did not know current Wells Fargo is not the good old Wells Fargo in the west coast, a little more than 10 years ago Norwest and Wells Fargo merged, and adopted the Wells name. Ok, back to the topic. Both USB and WFC stocks had a fun ride in the last 12 months. But more interestingly, as of today, WFC is down 5% YoY, while USB is down 42%. In the past 12 months a lot things have happened to Wells, the biggest one being the Wachovia acqusition. Both took TARP money. Both issued common stocks: twice for Wells (last Fall and last week), once fot USB (today). But the purpose of issing stocks is slightly different: Wells needed the money for captial, USB needs the money to pay back TARP.