Robinhood Responds to Accusations of Favoring Wall Street over Its Users


In search of Alpha has revealed an exposé by Logan Kane relating to free inventory and crypto buying and selling smartphone utility Robinhood. Mr. Kane alleges the corporate “takes from the millennial and offers to the high-frequency dealer” by accepting cost for order move and promoting order knowledge for “over ten instances as a lot as different brokers who interact within the follow.” Robinhood reached out to in response, explaining and defending its practices.

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Robinhood Explains Its Enterprise Mannequin and Practices

Generally known as “greatest execution,” a licensed brokerage should “execute buyer orders at the very best accessible value throughout each regional and nationwide inventory trade (nationwide greatest bid and supply, or NBBO),” a press release by Robinhood started in response to an article revealed in these pages solely days in the past. The corporate, “like the remainder of the business, participates in rebate packages which assist clients get extra value enchancment for his or her orders by creating competitors amongst the exchanges and liquidity suppliers who fill the orders, typically leading to superior execution high quality. Any rebates Robinhood receives don’t adversely impression this greatest execution obligation.”

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Mr. Kane rifled by way of US Securities and Trade filings from the corporate, and got here to the conclusion “high-frequency buying and selling corporations are paying Robinhood over 10 instances as a lot as they pay to different low cost brokerages for a similar quantity,” we reported. He insisted, “Robinhood takes from the millennial and offers to the high-frequency dealer,” and “they seem to be promoting their clients’ orders for over ten instances as a lot as different brokers who interact within the follow. It’s a battle of curiosity and is unhealthy for you as a buyer.”

In response, the corporate defined the way it, “in contrast to many different brokerages, has established the identical cost price (listed in SEC Rule 606 disclosure) with its main execution venues. This eliminates any incentive to direct orders to a sure execution venue. Robinhood algorithmically routes orders to a spread of completely different execution venues based mostly on which is almost certainly to present the best execution high quality and value enchancment on that order as well as to the NBBO. No different components impression the place buyer orders are routed.” The assertion continued:

Robinhood is dedicated to offering the absolute best execution high quality to its clients regardless of whether or not they place an order of a single share or one with greater than 10,000 shares.

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Robinhood Denies Promoting Buyer Information

Requested why it prefers per greenback worth over per share reporting, the corporate referenced its enterprise mannequin of zero-commission buying and selling, citing “having the ability to spend money on securities that value lower than $20 per share, comparable to Chesapeake Vitality, Dash, and Ford. Conventional per-share rebates don’t make sense for Robinhood’s executing venues for the reason that quantity of shares Robinhood’s clients transact per greenback is greater than on different platforms. Robinhood generates much less income with the rebate program structured round worth of transaction than if it have been structured round shares.”

Responding to the cost of the agency promoting private identifiable knowledge, the corporate flat out denied the allegation altogether. “Does Robinhood promote personally identifiable knowledge of any form to execution venues? No. Robinhood takes the privateness and safety of their clients extraordinarily critically. Robinhood doesn’t, has not, and won’t promote buyer data.”

Do you could have an issue with what Robinhood is reportedly doing? Tell us within the feedback under. 

Photographs courtesy of Shutterstock.

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