The YouTube streamer known online as ‘Roaring Kitty’, who helped drive a surge of interest in GameStop, will testify before a US House panel on Thursday alongside top hedge fund managers.
The House Financial Services Committee is examining how a flood of retail trading drove GameStop and other shares to extreme highs, squeezing hedge funds like Melvin Capital that had bet against it.
The witness list was announced on Friday by Representative Maxine Waters and includes Keith Gill, who also goes by Roaring Kitty, Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev, Citadel CEO Kenneth Griffin, Melvin Chief Executive Gabriel Plotkin and Reddit Chief Executive Officer Steve Huffman.
The virtual hearing, entitled “Game Stopped? Who Wins and Loses When Short Sellers, Social Media, and Retail Investors Collide,” will take place on Thursday, according to the press release. It will also be livestreamed across the internet. The controversial Democrat politician Maxine Waters is chair of the House Committee on Financial Services.
“We are working with the House Financial Services Committee and plan to testify,” Reddit’s Huffman said in a statement. A spokesperson for Melvin confirmed that Plotkin plans to testify.
Representatives for Citadel and Robinhood did not respond to requests for comment. Gill could not be reached for comment.
Robinhood, Reddit, Melvin and Citadel have been at the centre of the GameStop saga, which saw retail traders promote GameStop on the Reddit forum WallStreetBets. Robinhood emerged as a popular venue to trade the stocks but was criticized for temporarily restricting trading in the hot stock.
The GameStop Corp surge resulted in massive losses for Melvin, after the hedge fund bet the retailer’s stock price would tumble. Citadel’s hedge funds, along with founder Griffin and firm partners, put $2 billion into Melvin.
Democrats and the GOP seem to be somewhat united in their outrage by Robinhood’s decision to suspend trading in the so-called “meme stocks” on the 28th of January. Mr Tenev said the company was forced to impose the restrictions after wild trading in the stocks triggered a $3 billion margin call by Robinhood’s clearing house, straining the company’s balance sheet.
Massachusetts securities regulators have also issued a subpoena seeking Gill’s testimony.
The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed this news article. Translation from English to other languages via Google Cloud Translation. Initial reporting via our official content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Michelle Price in Washington and Megan Davies in New York. Additional reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss in Boston and John McCrank in New York. Editing by Daniel Wallis and Lisa Shumaker.
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