The Concentration of Undelivered Shares Among Threshold Securities:
Prospects of Stock Manipulation Using Naked Short Sales
Robert J. Shapiro
Sonecon, 14 November 2005
American public companies and their shareholders face a significant threat. Last year, researchers determined that naked short sales – short sales in which the shares are credited to buyer, but the short seller fails to borrow and deliver those shares – occur on a large scale, often extending for months at a time. New data now suggest that these “failures to deliver” or “fails” are concentrated in a relative handful of companies. This raises the prospect of naked short sales being used to manipulate some companies’ stock prices. The enormous extent of naked shorting and its likely use in stock manipulation could threaten the integrity of our financial markets and international confidence in them.