Anndy Lian, Advisory Board Member to Hyundai DAC participated in event “Global Roundtable Review” organised by Block Review. Anndy Lian talked about the recent short selling incident for Gamestop and investors worked through social media to gain an advantage.
The following is a summary of Anndy’s speech:
An overview of the Gamestop saga: What is a short squeeze?
The last week of events is unprecedented in my opinion.
When you buy a stock, you own it and the price goes up due to the company’s performance and all. But when you short it, you are basically betting on the stock to do badly. Some hedge funds are shorting a couple of stocks. They shorted more than a 100%.
The reddit group used publicly available information, went in to buy the stocks and driving the price up, they created a short squeeze. The group drove up the price of the stock, leading to the hedge fund paying more than what they had sold it for before returning the borrowed shares, at the cost of professional traders.
That led to stopping Robinhood app that is targeted at mass retail investors to buy the stock. Forcing a crash and despite all these, the stock went back up. The people are winning.
If Gamestop new share holders were to hold them long enough, the hedge funds will go out of business. Melvin Capital lost 53% of their investment.
Elon Musk and many other celebrities are also tweeting asking all to buy and hold. This movement has become organic.
What should investors know before shorting stocks?
Investors need to know what kind of risk they are getting themselves in. If you’ve ever lost money on a stock, you’ve probably wondered if there’s a way to make money when stocks fall. There is, and it’s called short selling. Even though it seems to be the perfect strategy for capitalizing on declining stock prices, it comes with even more risk than buying stocks the traditional way. Investing in stocks in the usual way is risky enough. Short selling should be left to very experienced investors, with large portfolios that can easily absorb sudden and unexpected losses.
How risky is it to be following leads on forums (like reddit)
If you are in investment groups or on social media, there are many groups soliciting to jab individual stocks. This is not something new. Social influencers are also doing this, in the stocks and crypto market. I would say it is very dangerous to follow blindly to the “financial advice” on social media as many times the expected outcomes are not what you want. This time this Reddit group managed to make it, but what about the hundreds or even thousands of times where retailor investors got hurt.
In the Gamestop saga, was there institutional money (the other camp) pushing the squeeze? Will blockchain technology help?
I hope not, else we will be losing faith in this so call free, open market in USA. I would believe not all hedge funds are bad. There are a small handful of bad actors right now. Nasdaq CEO is calling regulators to come in and account for what has been done.
Regulators should get to the bottom of this, how is it possible for them to short more than 100% of the stocks. The system must be upgraded. In order to have a fair market, this is also a perfect time to look at blockchain technology, this the same technology that is backing up Bitcoin and many others. Blockchain technology will improve transparency and efficient too.
The reddit group – called SatoshiStreetBets – has driven up price of Doge, similar to how WallStreetBets did for GameStop. DOGE started rallying after a Twitter user calling himself the chairman of WallStreetBets (though who is not affiliated with the subreddit) asked followers about the cryptocurrency.
“What you are seeing on DOGE is not a short squeeze. It is the effects of social media gathering and working together. You cannot short sell or squeeze DOGE. It’s only rising because of speculation.”
This DOGE movement is used to demonstrate how users can manipulate prices if they move together. An individual cannot drive the prices but a group or a community of people who worked on the same goal can do that.
Can a similar short squeeze situation happen in Singapore?
Short-selling is not banned in Singapore, but SGX already requires investors to mark sell orders as "long" or "short" and publishes both daily and weekly reports on short-selling activity. "Abusive" short-selling – for example, with the spread of false rumours – could also be prosecuted as market manipulation or deception under the Securities and Futures Act.
Such policies will improve transparency on short-selling activities in the securities market and enable investors to make more informed trading decisions. With the added on help with technology such as blockchain, it reduces the chance of us being in this situation.
But then again, “Anything can happen.” Maybe less likely in Singapore.
About Anndy Lian: