Although the stock market is slowly on the rise, trading has recently been moving away from established bourses such as the New York Stock Exchange to more clandestine platforms that are generally hidden from public queries. The move in aiding large companies in hiding their secretive agenda led to the growing apprehension of regulators regarding the growing obscurity of the true prices which ordinary investors cannot gauge.
The move has stirred quite a fuss lately and the portion of all the stock trading taking place away from the public exchanges hit record highs in the past weeks totaling to an approximate of 40 per cent.
The movement has resisted the government’s wide efforts to move more of their financial industries far away from the backrooms in order for the public to see through them clearly. The growing vagueness of the stock trading in the U.S. which is regarded as the most transparent place in the financial industry is slowly fading towards obscurity.
Just last month, the Australian government introduced new policies to limit trading off-exchange after Canada put up new regulation last fall. The US Securities and Exchange Commission have not commented on the matter so far.
Concerns are also very obvious in the financial sector. Several dark pools have been circulating as advertising tools that promise to keep out of the divisive trading practices. Dark pools like public exchanges let investors link with buyers and sellers with the condition of a less stringent regulation than public exchanges. Usually run by large investment firms, dark pools do not require buyers and sellers to disclose their intentions to the open market which allows them to hide behind the cloak of the operator of the pool itself.
This in turn appeals to a pension fund that wants to purchase millions of stock since it lets the fund steer evade tipping off competitors who are in full control of the prices. Investors also mentioned that they have moved more of their trades into the dark because their relationship with big exchanges like Nasdaq and NYSE have turned sour which have been due to technological glitches and recently been dominated by high-frequency traders.
The largest aspect however is the ongoing decline in the volatility of stock prices. When share prices are rising or falling, the natural instinct of investors is to want fast reliable trades which lead to a preference of safety over an exchange. In a calmer trading, the anonymity of a 30-plus dark pool is looking very good since they are generally cheaper.
The largest US dark pool operator reportedly commented that regulators should not establish new rules out of intimidation. Although long-term investors and regulators are apprehensive, the movement away from the exchanges will cripple what the US market made enviable. In off-exchanging trading, investors can’t see past what trades are made available and as a consequence they are not given a reasonable fair price.