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Given weak technology stock valuations, an IPO would offer a very unattractive cost of capital. Given the instability of the market, publicly traded Google stock serves as poor compensation for employees
1. Its not necessarily that Google needs money.
2. Google's investors and employees with stock-options would like to have a real market evaluation of their shares worth and a possible way out.
3. "a very unattractive cost of capital", if a Venture Capitalist wants to cash a part of his stake in Google, it is not a cost of capital to Google.
4. I think even in this stock market, Google's IPO PE will be sky-high.
5. I would not be suprised if they only float 10-20% of the shares.