August 1, 2008
I find the proposed amendments a step in the right direction, however feel they still fail to address the issue properly. The US Stock Market has long been seen as the way to invest money and has been sold as such to the country for years. This requires both TRUST and FAITH that we are putting our hard earned money into a fair market, free from the type of manipulation one might expect from a carnival side show. Sadly this still does not seem to be the case. Despite many great shows of concern by the SEC over the last few years any visit to the SHO list for any of the markets show there is NO COMMITMENT from the SEC to end this abusive practice.
It is very simple. The market/SEC is going to kill the goose that lays the golden egg. Tax receipts for the govt have been staggering over the last few years. Profits for Wall Street firms have been just as lucrative. However the individual investor is getting more and more wary as we are learning about these abusive, and we are told, illegal Naked shorting events. Simply put, at some point people will quit investing in the market as it appears the market is rigged. I know before I invest any of my dollars in a security I first check to see if it is listed on the SHO list. If it is I KNOW that there is illegal activity/trading occurring. While the SEC tries to explain away various reasons why some one might fail to actually have located/borrowed shares to short, the simple truth is there is simply NO VALID REASON
The recent actions of the SEC in a move to attempt to protect certain financial securities shows just how false the SEC's stand on this matter really is.
What I would propose is a rule making it illegal to fail to deliver. Any violation of this rule results in a FINE (read money for the GOVT) equal to ten percent of the underlying stock value in which the fail to deliver occurs. Further this should be enforced upon the Market Maker themselves. They are given the TRUST to manage an effective market. They should not be able to hide or side step this fiduciary TRUST we the public have placed in them.
This, sir's, would end the practice of failure to deliver instantly, as it removes any financial incentive to abuse the rules now in place. Shorting a company is a valid strategy and should be allowed to continue. However allowing the practice of shares being created out of thin air (equivalent to printing their own currency in my mind) was supposed to be the domain of the company issuing the shares with the public safe guards afforded investor based upon the SEC rules. Let please level the playing field and restore faith in the SEC and the market before it is too late.
In closing, please consider a new set of rules that actually places the responsibility to deliver shares in the one place that it belongs, the Market Makers. Add to this the penalties that remove any profit incentive for them to not act in the public's, and more to the point, their interest. Thank You