Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Let's make stock trading more personal

Goldman Sachs technical error causes erroneous U.S. option trades
Goldman Sachs said in a statement the firm does not face material loss or risk from the issue.
But then, later in the article:
Potential losses could range in the millions of dollars, the source said, but it was unclear just how many transactions were involved and what any final cost would be.
Yeah, our markets work just fine.  So, somebody makes a mistake, or in this some software malfunctions, and apparently, somebody else ends up the loser.  Either that or millions of dollars in losses are immaterial to Goldman Sachs (GS).  Regardless, I do wish the exchanges would ban automated trading, or at least put a requirement to actually hold a position for more than a fraction of a second.  Or even better, just return to the old days when traders stood on a street corner shouting out buy and sell orders.  It would make the whole stock trading business a whole lot more personal.  And, the exchanges could sell tickets to spectators.  I'll bet that business would be great, especially if the exchanges allowed disagreements to be resolved through physical means, as opposed to the current "my computer is closer to the exchange than your computer so I win" nonsense.  So, in case I haven't been clear, I don't like automated trading.  I don't like reading that some people lose money because other people failed to control their own software.  And yes, I realize that this article never directly said that any of that happened and I'm reading between the lines some.  But if I didn't do that then I wouldn't have anything to say about anything.

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