Facebook IPO unlikely this year

Report says social network may not go public until 2012

NEW YORK -- Silicon Valley and Wall Street have been hoping for a red-hot IPO of social networking juggernaut Facebook sooner rather than later, but they may have to wait even longer than previously thought.

Facebook would be one of the hottest IPOs in a long time and could help reignite the sluggish new issues market in the U.S., as well as boost the confidence of tech folks in the Valley.

While observers have said the Internet company could go public as early as this year or next, Facebook has stayed away from making public promises.

As of late, chatter has been that this year may not be the one that sees the company go public amid continuing concerns about the economy and stock market volatility. And that even though social networking has been one of the fastest-growing parts of the broader media and tech space.

Bloomberg reported Friday that Facebook will indeed probably put off an IPO until 2012, which would give 26-year-old CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his team more time to add users and advertising partners and grow revenue.