FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, February 1, 2021
Contact: Pamela Russell at 202-618-6433 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Issues for Investigation Regarding Robinhood, Reddit, GameStop and Rigged Markets
Better Markets Issues a Fact Sheet for Investigators
Washington, D.C. – Dennis M. Kelleher, President and Chief Executive Officer of Better Markets, issued the following statement and the attached Fact Sheet in response to recent market chaos involving Robinhood, Reddit, GameStop and other recent market trading events:
“The Reddit-fueled and Robinhood-facilitated frenzied trading of GameStop and a number of other public companies have raised serious investor protection and market integrity issues. To start with, brokers like Robinhood appear to be the opposite of the legendary character it purports to be; while it might not exactly be the Sheriff of Nottingham, a more accurate name might be “Robbin’ its Clients” for the many reasons detailed in the attached Fact Sheet.
“More broadly, these events have again exposed a vast predatory ecosystem underpinning too much of our financial markets, including the anti-retail trader, anti-buy side practices enabled by today’s rigged market structure. Policymakers, regulators and prosecutors—from Congress, the SEC, CFTC, Federal Reserve and the Department of Justice (as well as Treasury’s Financial Stability Oversight Council)—need to conduct comprehensive and thorough investigations into these events and activities to determine who, if anyone, broke the law and what policies, rules, regulations and laws, if any, need to change to protect investors and markets.
“Most importantly, as highlighted by the attached Fact Sheet, Robinhood, Reddit, GameStop and the other actors in today’s market mayhem are just the visible signs of the much deeper systemic problems in the markets. That’s why these investigations must also include the much less visible, but critical roles of the many financial firms and market intermediaries that create, enable and profit from today’s rigged markets, including banks, brokers, hedge funds, dealers, and short sellers. Those investigations must also include examining the roles of leverage, liquidity, derivatives, fragmentation, complexity, interconnectedness, high-frequency trading, the gamification of retail trading, market manipulation and conflicts of interest.
“These investigations must be conducted thoroughly and comprehensively but also quickly because, contrary to some beliefs, this trading and these events are not a game. There are lots of real people who are going to lose billions of dollars in connection with this market frenzy and not just hedge funds and other sophisticated financial firms shorting particular stocks. Just like housing values in connection with the 2008 financial crash, stock prices do not only go up. They will go down and they can go down far and fast, hurting retail investors and many others, often in unanticipated ways. We hope our Fact Sheet will inform and guide those investigations.”
Better Markets is a non-profit, non-partisan, and independent organization founded in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis to promote the public interest in the financial markets, support the financial reform of Wall Street and make our financial system work for all Americans again. Better Markets works with allies – including many in finance – to promote pro-market, pro-business and pro-growth policies that help build a stronger, safer financial system that protects and promotes Americans’ jobs, savings, retirements and more. To learn more, visit www.bettermarkets.com.