ETF Trends
ETF Trends

In an attempt to obviate another August 24 mini-flash crash in exchange traded funds, the New York Stock Exchange wants to make some structural changes and eliminate the so-called Rule 48 that came under fire during the market volatility.

According to a spokesperson, the NYSE is seeking to shelve Rule 48, which would allows market makers on the trading floor to avoid a time-consuming process of opening stocks during volatile conditions, reports Nicole Bullock for Financial Times.

“Rule 48 is no longer relevant in the opening procedures we have proposed,” Stacey Cunningham, NYSE’s chief operating officer, said at a meeting of the Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee.

The NYSE invoked Rule 48 multiple times to prevent panic trading during market open in late August. The relatively new rule allows stocks to open without price quotes ahead of time to allow a more orderly stock market open when there is expected to be large price gaps.

However, some are blaming the rule for the 1,278 circuit breakers, or imposed trading halts, that were enacted across major averages after shares fell to various levels. With many securities stuck in a holding pattern, the diminished transparency into pricing may have affected market makers’ ability to calculate at what price to step in – market makers help keep ETFs trading near their net asset value, but without the necessary transparency into underlying security prices, the market makers opted to step back and wait for more precise numbers to come in.

Consequently, ETF prices plunged lower as orders failed to get filled on early August 24, with ordinary investors wondering what was trading and whether they received the correct price on trades.

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