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Microcosm of the Market Manipulation in the US and the Repeated Failure of Ideology

Stock-Markets / Market Manipulation Feb 28, 2011 - 09:33 AM GMT

By: Jesse

Stock-Markets

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleI am seeing this same sort of 'gaming the markets' across many markets and stocks that the author notes below, especially in those markets amenable to leverage and electronic manipulation such as indices driven by futures, options markets, and ETFs which more closely resemble carney games than investment vehicles.


There has always been some element of this, but it is starting to become predominant and is driving out the honest trade and investment which cannot compete, in the same manner that the mortgage frauds corrupted and distorted a major sector of the economy and drove out conventional investment, regulation, checks and balances, regulatory oversight, and finally common sense.

It is getting to be a bit much, and is going to end badly. It will end badly because like the economy which has been crafted by the same makers it is hollow, a facade, set up for the benefit of a few who transfer wealth to themselves from the many. As someone wrote to me today:

"There aren’t really many good options for people who just want to save some money for retirement and live their lives in the meantime. Not even social security or pensions for 30-year veteran teachers are safe from pirate raids and partisan deconstruction. Everything else available to the ordinary retail and retirement saver has become a Wall Street killing floor."

This is no accident. This is no error in judgement. This is not philosophy. It is a calculated white collar crime, that has co-opted many elements of society. It hides behind slogans like 'small government' and 'libertarianism' and 'free markets' but its real intent is to subvert the law and corrupt the processes of the economy and society. It is a type of financial coup d'etat.

The problem is not that there is too much government, but rather, the government which you have is tainted with corruption and needs a thorough cleaning and reform. Knock down all the fences if you will in the name of an unsustainable ideal, and give the ravening wolves free range for their plunder. And then be surprised.

Anyone who believes that not enforcing the rules, or even simply eliminating them, will result in the natural and efficient flow of productive activity has never driven on a modern freeway. This notion is just another version of a belief in the noble savage, the view that people are naturally good and rational, but are corrupted by rules and society. And those people who espouse this think that they are cavorting in some magical world with Peter Pan, instead of with some of the oldest and basest forms of evil against which good people have continually come together throughout history for their mutual protection.

And when the next financial crisis comes along, perhaps the people will not be so complacent and gullible, and see the real culprits behind the ideological scapegoats and fog of talk show hosts. But I'm not betting on it.

From FMX Metals Connect

Editorial comment: It’s becoming increasingly annoying watching dealers buy calls and sell puts the day before we rally $20, and then the next day buy put and sell calls before we drop $20.

Yesterday’s sell off from the 1415 area seemed almost orchestrated. At the very least, the futures selling came in during the thinnest trading hours.

While exchanges herald the benefits of electronic trading there is one thing wrong with it. Electronic trading minimizes the information leakage associated with using brokers, for sure, but it is also allows oligarchic organizations to anonymously manage price movement while hiding behind digital displays.

We won’t use the word manipulate, in part because of our libertarian bent, but it’s getting ridiculous. Where there used to be 50 5-lot thieves on the floor now there are five Too-Big-To-Fail banks with infinite fed-sponsored balance sheets doing whatever they please. The idiot locals on the floor, fragmented as they were, served to keep the big banks in check because there was transparency of price and to a large extent, the players were known.

This doesn’t exist anymore and we don’t see an end to it. Instead of thinning the forest for the trees, technology, regulatory and economic factors have killed the saplings and destroyed market diversity. This translates to a narrow and deep liquidity pool in trading venues; god forbid if one of them fails.

Never fear. The Big Banks will remain on the Fed's dole, and will be receiving nearly continuous bailouts until the currency and the bonds are exhausted, if things go according to plan. And then the reivers will move on.

By Jesse

http://jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com

Welcome to Jesse's Café Américain - These are personal observations about the economy and the markets. In providing information, we hope this allows you to make your own decisions in an informed manner, even if it is from learning by our mistakes, which are many.

© 2011 Copyright  Jesse's Café Américain - All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


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