Friday, May 26, 2006

Dennis Rodman was right about Utah

Sorry, Mr. Lambiase. Time to move you on down the blog, for now. I never thought your dumbassedness could be topped in the sphere of securities regulation.

I hadn't counted on the State of Utah and neither, apparently, had the rest of the securities industry. SB3004, the "Byrne Bill" has been passed and signed into law by Governor Huntsman.

What to do?

Well, don't panic. Because in all likelihood, none of its language pertains to you. If you're a fund manager engaging in naked short selling and you're domiciled anywhere else but Utah, you can go back to screening through the trash for gems like Overstock to add to the short side of your fund.

But what if you're a broker/dealer, registered in the State of Utah, and you've had this heap of shit legislation dropped on your compliance officer?

Well, the news is not quite as bad as it may seem. The usual scammers, "Bob O'Brien", David Patch, and Mark Faulk, are all touting this legislation as being key to the elimination of "naked short selling".

It will do nothing of the kind.

Your only duty, as a broker/dealer, is to report a fail to deliver. That is all. If you report the failure to deliver, you're off the hook.

In fact, if it is your broker/dealer, through a principal trade done against one of your proprietary trading accounts, that is responsible for the fail to deliver, all you have to do is report it. This bill provides no penalty for a failure to deliver, merely a penalty for failing to REPORT a failure to delivery.

It is a do-nothing bill because it does nothing... besides add to your compliance and reporting requirements which are already horrendous.

Unfortunately, Dennis Rodman couldn't avoid Utah. You can. At the very least, you should consider shuttering any branches that are marginally productive in the State of Utah. You may want to institute rules that require confirmed, satisfactory delivery of stock certificates in your retail accounts before you let customers place sell orders. You might also consider a surcharge on tickets for trades executed on behalf of Utah residents. When they complain, just blame it on the Byrne Bill.

Byrne, baby, Byrne.

Let that asshole reap what he's sown.