Startups Suffer Bleak Second Quarter

The number of U.S. startups going public has slowed to a trickle and fresh funding for such companies has dropped sharply, adding to signs that venture-capital investors are confronting more challenging markets after a boom period.

The momentum for companies to go public has sputtered. In the first half of this year, private companies going public had a combined exit value of $49 billion, according to research company PitchBook Data Inc. That’s down from a record $777 billion for all of last year, according to the data released Thursday.