Friday, May 7, 2010


Business & Media Institue - While everyone is scratching their heads and trying to figure out how the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) lost nearly 1,000 points before rallying back to lose only 347 points – it appears not to be limited to just one stock.

On CNBC’s May 6 “Closing Bell,” correspondent Matt Nesto explained that investigators for both the stock exchanges and for Citigroup, the firm that some are pointing fingers at for a so-called trader error, have narrowed it down to a futures index called the E-mini S&P 500.

“A person familiar with the Citi investigation said one focus of the trading probes were the futures contracts tied to the S&P 500 stock index known as the E-mini S&P 500 futures and in particular that two-minute window in which 16 billion of the futures were sold,” Nesto said. “Again, those sources are telling us that Citigroup’s total E-mini volume for the entire day was only 9 billion, suggesting that the origin of the trades was elsewhere.”

“Now according to someone else close to Citigroup’s own probe of the situation, the E-Minis trade on the CME,” Nesto continued. “Now Maria, I want to add something else just in terms of these erroneous trades that Duncan Niederauer, the NYSE CEO was just talking about. I mean, we’ve talked a lot about Accenture, ACN. This is a Dublin-based company. It’s not in any of the indexes. If you look in the S&P 500, for example, I show at least two stocks that traded to zero or one cent – Exelon and CenterPoint. If you look in the Russell 1,000, I show Eagle Materials, Genpact, ITC and Brown & Brown, also trading to zero or a penny, and also Casey’s General Stores, as well as Boston Beer trading today, intraday, to zero or a penny. So those have at least eight names that they’re going to have to track down on top of the Accenture trade, where we have the stock price intraday showing us at least, we’ll assume, a bogus trade of zero.”

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