Stock market acting “hinky”; Plunge Protection Team suspected, or mysterious “fat-finger”

May 7, 2010

The stock market lost almost 1000 points at one point, before rebounding again to settle at about 350 points down from the previous day. Among the casualties, 8 E-Mini S & P 500 futures stocks mysteriously got traded down to 0 as 16 shares were sold in the span of about 2 minutes. It started to rebound just as it reached the 10,000 mark, almost as if on cue. The strange behavior of the market in general, and certain stocks in particular, had talking heads on financial news networks speculating live on air about possible market manipulation.

Stacey Herbert voiced the obvious speculation at when she discussed the likelihood that this was the result of intervention from the Plunge Protection Team, due to the telltale involvement of Proctor & Gamble and 3M stocks, known market bellwethers often used by the PPT for systematic Dow manipulation.

The news is presently saying that this may have been the result of an error, that some trader with “fat fingers” accidentally typed a B on his computer instead of an M and sold a billion shares instead of a million, and they are blaming Citigroup, who denies that they had any involvement in it.

Zero Hedge has a number of great articles today dissecting the hinkiness.

Bottom line, as Tyler Durden puts it: “Fat finger my ass.”

This subject is discussed at length at the beginning of this week’s Invisible Hand podcast.

Here’s video of today’s suspected “market manipulation” being described as such on CNBC:

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