The 'what we lose in margin, we'll make up for in volume' strategy is failing. And for the NYSE it is failing large. The decision to 'enable' HFT - for its 'liquidity-provision', which after all has done nothing but expose the dismal reality of a market structure designed to nickel-and-dime retail til the last penny drops, has had the absolute opposite unintended consequence of driving the only real liquidity provider - the retail trader putting his real money to work - out of the market. As Securities Technology reports, the NYSE Euronext reports daily volume of trading stocks down 16.9% from a year ago (and down 17.8% YTD compared to last year) and down 9.9% from June alone. Trading in stocks on its exchanges in Europe were also down 12.3%. This plunge in stock trading has knocked into the derivative markets which have seen a massive 15.8% cliff-dive worldwide from June to July.
One more nail statistic in the coffin of CNBC's audience is a 29.7% drop in ETF transactions year-over-year and NYSE/Arca/MKT's share of trading in NYSE-listed stocks is down 34.3% from a year ago as the dark pools rise.
With volumes collapsing it is only likely that we will see far more 'incidents' such as Knight - where companies whose top-line explicitly stems from flow trading - increasingly find themselves redundant; whether or not this is due to a self-inflicted algo, or other, potentially more sinister, reasons.