More or less from the moment Robinhood and others began to place limits on retail customers’ trading of GameStop and other meme shares, those thereby blocked from doing so have presumed nefarious motives. The degenerates and diamond hands looked at the relationship between, say Robinhood and Citadel Securities, a company which contributes it share of 80% of Robinhood’s revenue, and whose sister hedge fund had rather a vested interest in seeing the short-squeeze crushing founder Ken Griffin’s buddy end, and concluded that the fix was in. Well, the internal communications over at Robinhood in the run-up to the trading restrictions isn’t likely to disabuse them of that notion.
As things l’affaire GameStop really ramped up, someone at Citadel (the names have been redacted) noted to Robinhood’s deputy general counsel, “we obviously have a strong relationship between the two firms.” The day before the restrictions were imposed, Robinhood’s top brass had a 5 p.m. chat with Citadel, with founder Vlad Tenev wondering if “Maybe this would be a good time for me to chat with Ken griffin.” Why ever would that be, Vlad? An hour and a half after the call began, Robinhood President Jim Swartout said in an internal chat, “you wouldnt believe the convo we had with Citadel. total mess.”
It is indeed, Jim, for in spite of your later and potentially exculpatory bitterness toward Citadel (“I am beyond disappointed in how this went down. It’s difficult to have a partnership when these kind of things go down this way.”), Ken Griffin & co. feel compelled to deign to address it.
Citadel Securities in a statement Tuesday rejected “Internet conspiracies and Twitter mobs” that have again accused the firm of pushing Robinhood Markets Inc. and other brokerages to limit trading in GameStop and other meme stocks on Jan. 28, a move that resulted in losses for many small investors.
"Citadel Securities never requested, intimated, agreed or otherwise sought to limit or to restrict the trading of such securities," Citadel Securities said in a statement to Reuters on Tuesday.
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