Between shorts, an MM accumulating for long institutions, and the HFT programs, retailers are taken out to the woodshed. It's endless. It's pervasive. It's now part of the fabric of the culture of Wall Street with small caps in particular. Savvy traders can still win and take advantage of the volatility or low volume take-downs, and investors long can win, but any retailers in between, get ripped to shreds.
When the selling dries up, unless buyers come in, the HFT programs take over and there is no longer any supply or demand. It's a game to take retailers under water for as long intraday as possible until someone flinches and retailers usually start to sell, and the programs win. It's not going to change. BRUTAL action from 1:30 on -