Every trade is captured. It all goes through computers. Its all logged, and all of the data is available for analysis. So my question is, why is it, a day after the massive sell-off, that no one can tell us anything more than vague speculation about what actually happend.
I know nothing about trading systems. But what I do know is that if all the information is not there to tell us what happened, it should be. Is this a regulatory problem, or a software problem, or something else?
Amazingly, as stocks were diving downward, willing buyers were locked out of purchasing. Obviously if sellers can sell but buyers can't buy, you have a problem. There has to be some explanation, and I can't imagine why it would take days, or even hours to figure out how a $50 stock could get to a price of $0 with no one able to purchase as that price is dropping.
So I am not a wall street guy. I am a software guy. But honestly, this sounds to me like a software problem. Based on my 10,000 foot view, it seems obvious to me that if the wall street guys aren't running systems that can't provide quick answers to these questions, we have a serious problem. For months we have been talking about the impact of things like greed, too big to fail, and systemic risk on main street. But given what happened yesterday, I think we need to add something critical and new to that list: incompetence.