Economics

Surprise! "Emergency" Short-Sell Ban Extended

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In the ongoing emergency, the SEC has chosen to extend the ban on short-selling a long list of financial (and non-financial once like GE, GM, and Zale Jewelery) stocks until--and this is an interesting twist, via the AP--"until the third business day after enactment of the $700 billion financial bailout plan now before Congress. It will end no later than Oct. 17." Seems kind of interesting to peg the first date for a directive to end to something that, after all, might not happen at all. Or is the fix in?

New reporting requirements for short-sales that are still legal, says AP, "will continue beyond Oct. 17 as an interim rule, the SEC said, promising to seek public comment on it. The SEC, however, made a modification, allowing managers to report their short positions to the agency confidentially, rather than requiring public disclosure."

Why the short-sell ban was a bad idea in the first place, and what it all means, discussed in my article from last week.