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Matt Levine

SEC Caught Dark Pool and High Speed Traders Doing Bad Stuff

I'm really impressed by the SEC's approach to high-frequency trading, which checks off a lot of buzzwords without any actual hasty populist overreaction.

I've said this before, but I really admire the way the Securities and Exchange Commission has responded to the recent uproar about high-frequency trading. A lesser regulator would have jumped on the bandwagon of HFT bashing, or even tried to get out ahead of it with its own anti-HFT branding.

The SEC, on the other hand, basically thinks high-frequency trading is fine, but it knows you don't think that, and it wants to be tactful. It could just explain that markets aren't rigged, but "markets are rigged" is sort of unfalsifiable. If the SEC says that the stock market is not a giant conspiracy to steal your money, that just means that it's in on the conspiracy.