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Abstract

High-frequency trading is the practice of using computerised algorithms to hold investment positions for very short periods of time, influence the market and profit from the distortions. Analysis of the practice reveals that it may threaten the stability of the market. For example, it contributed to the 6 May 2010 ‘flash crash’. This article considers how to limit high-frequency trading and minimise its negative effects, including the efficacy of levying a financial transactions tax on high-frequency trades or financial transactions generally. It also notes the possible application of insider trading laws to high-frequency trading.

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