Business & Finance Jan 29, 2021 12:30 AM EST

BREAKING: Robinhood CEO defends pausing trade on GameStop and other stocks

Vlad Tenev said that people are unable to buy the restricted stocks, but that they were able to sell it. “We understand out customers are upset, we’re doing what we can to reenable buying.”

BREAKING: Robinhood CEO defends pausing trade on GameStop and other stocks
Libby Emmons Brooklyn, NY
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Speaking to CNBC on Thursday evening, Robinhood CEO Val Tenev announced that trading for the thirteen stocks for which the brokerage had halted trading on Thursday morning would be back in play Friday morning.

Tenev said that people were unable to buy the restricted stocks on Thursday, but that they were able to sell it. “We understand out customers are upset, we’re doing what we can to reenable buying.”

To those customers who are angry about being shut out at the prime moment when they should have been able to sell their holdings for the highest price the market commanded, Tenev said “it was not an easy decision.” He said that his team made the “correct decision,” and that he intends to give customers the most stable, reliable platform moving forward.

Tenev said that he wants to give customers access, and that this is something he’s been “super strong” about from the beginning, and that they’d be working hard to make sure customers have the access they expect.

He was asked by CNBC when they realized that the “options volume was just crazy,” and the stock volume, and what that process was.

Tenev said that social media played a role in this, and that this was not something “anyone could have anticipated.” And said that they want their customers to be as “unrestricted as possible.”

Tenev said that buying would be unrestricted tomorrow, and that they want people to be able to “buy-in safely,” and that they are weighing the current circumstances. “We should have been out there a little bit sooner,” he said.

Robinhood was at the center of controversy this week when amateur investors from Reddit made a play to drive up the price of GameStop stock, forcing Wall Street investors who were trying to sell short to have to buy the options at a higher price, losing billions.

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