May 5, 2009
Having worked as a business and financial editor for seventeen years for The Oregonian in Portland and as a correspondent for Business Weeek Magazine for several years, I hope this is regarded as a protest coming from years of professional judgement: I have watched helplessly through the demise and destruction of several viable small companies, the most recent being Centerspan Communications, formerly Thurstmaster (though I could name several others). These companies have been wiped out by naked short selling. When a company reaches the over the counter stage due to price and is not listed on an exchange, the naked shorting becomes virulent. While the SEC apparently cannot enforce the delivery regulations on brokers who turn their backs on the regulations which apply, it can help curb the practice by enforcing the UPTICK rule. Why this was ever dropped by the Republican appointed SEC is self evident to anyone taking the time to look at the results. My hope is that SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro will: 1- do whatever she can to bring back the uptick rule in its original form which operated so successfully for years and 2-Make a visible effort to enforce the rules designed to eleminate naked shorts.