Reports are now emerging that the stock market is rigged against small investors. But while that may add to your cynicism, it shouldn't subtract from your desire to save and invest.
At the heart of the latest scandals is what's called HFT (high frequency trading). This is where insiders cook the system by using ultra high-speed computers to make money cheating you on buy/sell trades.
No less a figure than Charles Schwab himself recently called the controversy surrounding HFTs a "cancer" on the industry!
The thing is, we have no laws against HFTs. This is the wild West. So of course that's led to a lot of concern from small investors.
But that's not the message I want you to take from this latest Wall Street scandal. Yes, it seems clear that there's vast cheating of small investor. And as much as I hate to say "there out to be a law…," I believe the laws need to be changed and people should do hard time for this stuff.
Even though cheating is going on, this is a non-issue for you if you buy and hold for a long time. Staying in the game effective flattens the damage even though you are being cheated. The person who really has to be concerned is the person who buys and sells often.
If you do mutual or index funds through a 401(k) at work, this is a non-story for you.
So yes, the scandal surrounding HFTs is terrible and speaks to culture of Wall Street where they're always looking for a way to treat. And it seems like the big shots always get away with it.
So this could add to your cynicism, but it shouldn't subtract from your desire to save and invest. Because you'll really be the loser in the end if you don't save for your future.
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