Pretty obvious the price action's being manipulated, flat for two days, this morning for the half hour I watched, asks in quantities of something like 5K and 6K, at $3.40 and bids of equal size (roughly, three actually totaling near 15K) at $3.39, and with all that, virtually a trickle of transactions for the half hour.
What to make of this:
There are roughly 28m shares in the float, and from a quick add up of the CNBC tally it shows the vast majority of the shares are held by large block owners overwhelmingly trading institutions (I have called cnbc and other such resources in the past, they all get their data from Thomson Reuters, whom I have called, the Thomson unit, and argued about the numbers before (different stock) and they were adament their numbers are good). FWIW the list shows almost all of the float is accounted for by trading institutions. Icahn and Blaupost 6m and 8m respectively (virtually 50% of the float), and other inst's nearly all the rest. Mutual funds and ETFs hold around 5-6m, and retails actually make up a pretty small portion of the float 2-4m at best near as I can tell. (Note there almost always many millions of FTDs in the system.)
In the past two days volume has added up to something like 2.6m shares, 10% churn in two days. My take is that some of the institutional big fish out to eat the little fish (not the minnows, us), covering their FTDs and scraping up what they can additonally. Trading institutions live on leverage, and in this day and age they can all know where the sensitive (margin call) pressure points are. This is margin call action imo, but not an attack on retails, simply not enough there to make it worthwhile, it has to be fish eating fish.
The bad news is of course we all feel the pressure and even if you are not out on margin, nobody likes having their asset value screwed over.
The good news, the high precentage holdings of institutions, class action muscle power, and they too don't like getting screwed.
Totally agree. For every attempt at pushing this over $3.40 was met with an equal if not greater sale at market. Someone's got it programmed to build a flash wall at $3.40 for the whole day, and I think after lunch, someone finally cave and dumped below $3.40, however, some resistance was met, though, this is all carefully controlled as I do not believe whoever is dumping is looking for a sudden drop in SP either. Traders pay their meals for the day off the penny gains, and I believe that is exactly what is happening now.
What does my crystal ball tell me? I believe the SP will recover back to $3.80-4.00 prior to ex-div date (or in this case, the record date in absence of the ex-div due to special dividend conditions).