If you've been wondering where the next financial bubble and crisis will be coming from --like i have--look no further.
Rise of Dark-Pool Trading Concerns Regulators - NYTimes.com
The portion of all stock trading taking place away from the public exchanges hit new highs over the last few weeks, amounting to close to 40 percent on several days, up from an average of 16 percent in 2008, according to Rosenblatt Securities.
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Dark pools, like public exchanges, give investors a place to connect with buyers and sellers of stock, but the pools are subject to less stringent regulations than public exchanges. Often run by big banks, dark pools do not require buyers and sellers to publicly announce their intention to trade stocks, allowing traders and investors to hide behind a veil that only the operator of the pool can penetrate.
That appeals to a pension fund that wants to buy a million shares of Ford stock, for instance, because it allows the fund to avoid tipping off competitors who could push the price of the stock up.
Investors also have said that they have moved more of their trading into the dark because they have grown more distrustful of the big exchanges like the N.Y.S.E. and the Nasdaq. Those exchanges have been hit by technological mishaps and become dominated by so-called high-frequency traders.
But the biggest factor pushing trading away from the public exchanges is the ongoing decline in volatility in stock prices, traders say. When share prices are rising or falling sharply, investors want to quickly and reliably get their trade done, leading to a preference for the safety of an exchange. In calmer trading, on the other hand, the anonymity of dark pools is more attractive. What’s more, dark pools are generally cheaper to use than an exchange.
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