Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev. Picture: REUTERS/BRENDAN McDERMID
Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev. Picture: REUTERS/BRENDAN McDERMID

Washington — Robinhood Markets CEO  Vlad Tenev said in prepared congressional testimony on Wednesday that his firm didn’t improperly aid hedge funds and that it restricted customers’ trades of GameStop to meet clearing demands.

“Any allegation that Robinhood acted to help hedge funds or other special interests to the detriment of our customers is absolutely false and market-distorting rhetoric,” he said in testimony released by the House Financial Services Committee ahead of Thursday’s hearing. “Trading limits we put in place on GameStop and other stocks were necessary to allow us to continue to meet the clearinghouse deposit requirements.”

The virtual hearing, set for noon Thursday, will the first chance for legislators  to hear from executives involved in the recent stock-market frenzy.

Chair Maxine Waters, a California Democrat, has said she wants to scrutinise all players tied to recent wild swings in GameStop and other stocks. The panel has yet to release testimony from Ken Griffin, Citadel’s billionaire founder, and Reddit Inc. co-founder Steve Huffman.

Gabe Plotkin, a hedge fund manager whose firm took heavy losses during January’s Reddit-fuelled trading, plans to tell Congress that he was “humbled” by the experience.

“Melvin Capital played absolutely no role” in the decisions of trading platforms to limit the buying and selling of GameStop shares, according to Plotkin’s written testimony. “In fact, Melvin closed out all of its positions in GameStop days before platforms put those limitations in place.”


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