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Snap Inc shares soar 44% on US stock market debut

Shares in Snapchat's parent company, Snap Inc, ended their first day on the US stock market up by 44% as the camera firm enjoyed a strong start to trading.

Stock in the company was trading at $24.51 at the end of the day in New York, up from the $17 the company had priced its shares before launch as part of its initial public offering (IPO).

Earlier, analysts had suggested the company could make a success of going public thanks to its appeal to younger technology users.

However, the platform has come under pressure in recent months following a slow in the number of new users joining the service and social giant Instagram introducing a 'stories' feature identical to that of Snapchat's.

Though it is traditional for stock to rise in value in its first day of trading, the increase suggests early investor excitement around Snapchat, which re-branded as a Snap Inc and as a camera company in late 2016.

This decision was called "very clever" by trader Jordan Hiscott, who said the move helped differentiate Snapchat from previous technology IPOs such as Facebook and Twitter, which endured mixed results.

Mr Hiscott also called the company an "exciting prospect" because of its "innovative features".

There was a word of caution in Snapchat's results however, which resembled that of Twitter's in 2013 when the social media site also saw a strong first day only to then fall back and now sits well below its IPO price.

As part of its re-brand last year Snapchat also launched its first hardware product, video-enabled glasses called Spectacles that can upload content directly to Snapchat.

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