May 6, 2009
Regarding laissez faire short selling and hedge funds, my wife is a retired nurse and I am a retired small business man. We are sickened and livid that our retirement plans - built on years of careful savings and investments - have gone up in smoke since last summer, reducing us to near poverty and living in a house we cant sell and no longer pay for.
Our retirement finances were built around General Electric common stock, and Citigroup, Merrill Lynch, Bank of America and Fannie Mae preferred stock. We are not speculators or moral hazards. Our holdings were trashed last year by naked short selling, unregulated hedge funds and disingenuous corporate public statements.
Life must be very good in Washington for the SEC commissioners and staff - surrounded by Wall Street lobbyists, enmeshed in failed ideology, incomplete empirical studies of short selling, and insulated from the real pain of ordinary people on Main Street.
The old uptick rule worked very well for ordinary investors until 2007. It endured the test of time for decades during good markets and bad markets. It protected small investors and retirement funds from being hammered into the ground.
Can the SEC now step up and admit that it made a mistake by repealing the uptick rule? Failing to regulate hedge funds? Allowing margin trading when the collateral is not actually owned but borrowed stock?