Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Will regulators do their job ?

In the USA, Bankers are now a discredited group, reports Bloomberg, - "Bankers Might Need 50 Years to Regain Credibility". The bankers referred to, are really investment bankers, similar to brokers in India. "The real bloodshed will occur in the weeks and months ahead. Nobody knows what the real outcome of this disaster will be, although it's very likely that the financial industry will be crushed. "

American regulators will no longer be pushed about by financial wizards. (They are not really wizards, are they ? Just overpaid ****!) On the contrary, "we are going to see newly empowered regulators go on the rampage. The taxpayers will demand nothing less. ".

What about India ? I have written earlier about proprietary trading in derivatives by some brokerages. This is an activity that should be stopped forthwith, by SEBI, before a catastrophe happens. Why should a brokerage use public money - your money to trade privately ? Brokerages are allowed tax benefits, access to institutional finance and entry into stock exchanges for one purpose - to serve the clients. Trading in derivatives is not part of their charter. It is a black hole which may well be the cause of manipulation of the markets. It serves no economic purpose.

UBS - the large Swiss bank has just announced that it will stop all proprietary trading. If UBS feels this activity has large risks, what do you think could happen in India ? In difficult times, the wise regulator plugs all leaks, prevents any possibility of misuse.

3 comments:

piyush modi said...

You write a lot about the local brokerages & their proprietary trading. Do some of them have large losses, which they are possible hiding ??

Anant said...

Proprietory Broker Houses must have had nice beating. I still remember faces of such experts who appeared on CNBC on Jan 21st to 23rd. Ofcourse all of them were off mood. Few of them were talking with absolutely dead eyes. I had a feeling at that time that whether they knew what they were talking OR they were talking just for the sake of talking. What must have happened to them by this time is anybody's guess.

piyush modi said...

Then who makes the money in the steep falls ? I mean we were sitting on around 100000 Cr Open Interest at the peak in January. Lets assume that around 50% of this was hedged positions. We had a near 20-25% fall in just 4-5 sessions. This meant that there must have been a transfer of wealth of atleast 10000-12500 crores from the longs to the shorts? That is phenomenal amount of money. Who made all that money? Wow !!