The move will add to similar controls put in place since August 2016, first on extreme gyrations in equities and a year later on derivative products. They followed a series of events that provoked regulatory probes into market misconduct such as price manipulation and pump-and-dump scandals.
“The volatility control mechanism (VCM) has worked as intended without any negative feedback from the market,” said Tom Chan Pak-lam, chairman of Hong Kong Institute of Securities Dealers, the local brokerage industry body. “In many cases, sharp and sudden price movements were smoothed out as the cooling-off periods allowed participants to react while trading continued.”
Former UBS precious metals trader Andre Flotron was acquitted on Wednesday of market manipulation, a development that could spell trouble for similar cases against other Wall Street traders.
Authorities arrested Flotron late last year on charges he engaged in a Wall Street practice called “spoofing,” which involves placing and then immediately aborting trades to move prices. The acquittal follows January’s $46.6 million settlement with UBS, Deutsche Bank and HSBC over allegations traders at the banks worked to manipulate futures markets in precious metals between 2008 and early 2014.