Harvard Law Prof.: Tenev is ‘sympathetic’, ‘trying to do the right thing’

February 22, 2021 James Heinsman In the News

When former Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli appeared before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in 2016, the most notable thing about his testimony was the smirk on his face as he refused to answer representatives’ questions about Turing’s $13.50 to $750 price hike for Daraprim, an anti-AIDS drug.

Last week, it was Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev’s turn in the hotseat, appearing before the House Financial Services Committee to answer questions about his company’s role in last month’s GameStop trading frenzy and about stopgap provisions to protect Robinhood investors. His testimony, however, could not have been a sharper contrast to Shkreli’s: Tenev answered Committee members’ questions clearly and politely, and in several instances engaged the Representatives in discussion regarding Robinhood’s business practices.

Analyzing the appearance with Yahoo Finance’s Alexis Christoforous, Harvard Law Professor Jesse Fried said Tenev portrayed himself as a “sympathetic” character who was “trying to do the right thing,” and accepted Tenev’s assertion that the market upheaval was “not really ‘anticipatable’.”

Fried also noted Tenev’s admission that “not everything Robinhood did was 100 percent perfect,” but added that regulation to protect low-income and inexperienced investors from the dangers of options trading would be unpopular and therefore unlikely to become law.

RobinHood, Vlad Tenev,

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