Here is a small video capture I put together to hopefully show what we all are referring to as manipulation. I like to call this action a "floating order." I don't know what else to call it. It's almost as if the MM's are using it as an indicator of which direction to take the stock. In this example, you will see the floating bid order. I noticed this on the days where the volume picked up significantly. This order can be on the bid or ask side and YES I have seen on the ASK.
Let me know what you guys think.
I've been watching the same thing for 3 years (no joke). You are right that it indicates potential price change (or price near which the run will top or bottom), although you also have to look at when a 1 share transaction goes down on the tape in conjunction witt the "floating order" as you call it. There must be a negative disparity between the bid and ask listed on the tape, etc.
Some type of signal is obviously being sent by the MMs to someone in the know; however, the system is very complicated. I was also unsure as to whether they might change the signal meanings from time to time, which would negate expected signals.
I traded these signals on a number of occasions, sometimes very successfully, sometimes not, but finally gave up as the stock fell into pennyland. I'm not one for wild conspiracies, but I watched this stock every day for months on end and know this was happening. Too bad the SEC won't investigate manipulation like this--this stock cost me much more than I care to recall.
So, did you contact NASDAQ or Fidelity with this "proof" of "market manipulation"?
By the way, what is the "manipulation"?
What you are seeing is technically called a "crossed market", when a bid is higher than an ask. It's called a "locked market" when the bid equals an ask.
According to regulations, orders need to be filled at the NBBO or better. So are you seeing prints go off below the "floating bid"?
An order can be in the system showing only 200 shares but have a reserve of a million. There's nothing illegal about that. No regulation requires the order to show ALL of its size. The only requirement is for the order to make good on what's displayed and do one of either two things; fill all offers made at that price OR move down if the bid fills what it's there for.
So, explain this "manipulation" you are seeing.
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