Short sellers and now Robinhood are getting critics of all stripes
Tesla CEO Elon Musk wrote in a series of tweets Thursday a litany of anti-short thoughts, punctuated with “get shorty”. Also said he “absolutely” agrees with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-NY., that the House Financial Services Committee should launch an investigation into Robinhood because of stock trade restrictions that were put into place by the online app-based brokerage related to GameStop.
Always a master of viral expression, Musk famously marketed “short-shorts” as a dig at short sellers that he felt were unfairly targeting volatile Tesla stock moves. In the end, at least so far, he has always had the last laugh.
Robinhood is blocking “investors” from initiating new positions in GameStop, AMC Entertainment Holdings, American Airlines, BlackBerry Ltd., Bed Bath & Beyond Inc., Express Inc., Koss Corp., Naked Brand Group, Nokia Corp, Trivago, and Tootsie Roll Industries, Inc. They are only permitting them to sell existing holdings. Margin requirements were also increased for various securities.
The actions likely have a two-fold justification, based on the situation. To protect Robinhood from litigation in the even, which is likely, that the stock will collapse and many novice “investors” will get hurt, and ostensibly, to protect the investors themselves.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez stated: “We now need to know more about @RobinhoodApp’s decision to block retail investors from purchasing stock while hedge funds are freely able to trade the stock as they see fit.” And then added: As a member of the Financial Services Cmte, I’d support a hearing if necessary.
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