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There is a lot of academic research on the topic but one conclusion that many people have come to is that the underperformance of newly public companies has as much to do with overly optimistic estimates of future growth. So for me it’s a matter of personal taste as to whether you believe (1) that this is caused by management/owners and their advisors being opportunistic by selling equity stakes in their companies when it is most valuable/advantageous, or (2) companies and banks are evil/distasteful/liars and an IPO process is borderline theft. As other commenters have said, index funds/ETFs/mutual funds may be a better solution for some people than individual stocks. But for some people that have a particular view of the world that they want to express in an investment decision, individual stocks can be perfectly fine, even at IPO if expectations are reasonable.

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