May 16, 2009
Investors should be able to select if they want their shares to be available for a short sell or not at the time of a trade. May be a do not short sale list with a percent of the company's shares restricted to shares that are not on the list.
Also, it is very hard for investors to prove that companies or traders are engaging in trading strategies to run price down. Most of the companies and traders involved in this type of activity have very complex trading systems and news reporting systems which make it hard for anyone to determine their true motives. For example, small investors may be able to prove that a large company or hedge fund is manipulating stock price and slanting news articles of a company to benefit from a short sale. In most cases it would require a person with large array of knowledge in economics, computers, finance, law and inside investment strategies to understand what is going on here ( being a trusted member their trading culture).
The investors who are making a lot money short selling are making it very hard for people to even complain. They act as if the owners of the shares they borrow have no rights to prevent them from driving their long term investments down. They fight any rule change that is not in their favor, put out negative news reports about anyone that goes against them and I believe they are even targeting investors who speak out against them.
Finally, some investors and traders are making large amounts of money on side bets by shorting in mirrored accounts of their firms and inverse from their clients. They are not using this investment strategy to hedge account for the best interest of clients but instead they use it to make 20 to 30 percent on their personal accounts at the expense of unsuspecting investors, this is why they don't want change.
One investor even stated that the SEC was clueless as to what is going on here. To make things simple I think a do not short list for some investors would be good start.