April 4, 2008
My comments would have to be I am in favor of stopping naked shorting in the market place no matter how the new rules are written. It needs to stop as a practice. Simple changes in the rules will not be enough if the institutions can find a way around the new rules.
It amazes me that some companies stocks can stay on the SHO List for weeks and months at a time and nothing is done now.
It becomes evident that the problem is so out of control at this time the SEC can not enforce their own rules or investigate the situations that already exist, so completely stopping short selling until shares have been located would seem the answer. In most cases, retail investors are not able to locate shares to short for months, but the short interest continues up from month to month, obviously created by institutions through options trades or other methods.
Investing in our markets is difficult enough in today's market place without naked short sellers creating fathom shares. These fathom shares also destroy the value of the real shares issued by corporations in the first place.
This along with the ability to then short these fathom shares on the down tick creates a situation where if certain institutions have enough capital they can simply naked short a company's value to exaggerated below fair market prices.
The SEC has to know this is happening, there are many publicly traded companies, that are not hard to find, that institutions own over 100% of the shares issued. I would suggest at least investigating a few of these situations if naked shorting is going to continue as a practice to put some fear in the people using illegal practices to manipulate securities prices.