As regular SiriusBuzz readers know, Stock Shock is a documentary about Sirius XM, market manipulation, and the overall story of satellite radio. I was interviewed for the film, and appear in it several times. I must say that I had some hesitation when I was first approached about being in the movie. After all, I am a simple blogger, who just happens to follow satellite radio pretty closely. After speaking with the producer and director, Sandra Mohr, I agreed to be interviewed.
Today, I received my copy of the movie, and popped into the entertainment system. I knew of a lot of the content of the movie, but had not yet seen it. Knowing that the editing process is what tells the story, I had a bit of nervousness about not only how I would be portrayed, but also what the tenor of the movie would be. I can say that overall I was pleased with the piece.
Stock Shock the movie not only tells the story of satellite radio, but the story of people who are perhaps satellite radio's most passionate fans...the investors. The movie speaks to how Wall Street really works, and to the overall lack of regulation and oversight not only with the Sirius equity, but across the board.
The stock market can be a brutal place, and today, many investors now realize that. One fascinating segment of the movie deals with the government wanting to instill confidence in the market. Confidence, according to the film, is really a false sense of security. The market needs new money to flow and this only happens when people have the confidence to invest. The problem with the market is not in the confidence of investors, but rather a total lack of oversight. The film demonstrates that electronic trades facilitate activities that should simply not be legal. These counter productive activities happen every day, and nothing has ever been done to stop it.
So was Sirius XM the victim of such manipulation? Of course. No equity on the market is immune. Was it this manipulation that lead to the downfall of Sirius XM? In part yes, but the problems boil back to many factors:
- The length of time for merger approval
- The collapse of the financial system as the merger was gaining approval
- The collapse of consumer confidence
- The actions of the company
In my opinion, the overall collapse started with the rise in gas prices. Gas prices tripled, and people complained. However, they really did not feel the impact for a few months. This is when people found that they had far less discretionary cash available. By the time they realized it, they were in deeper debt than they imagined, and spending began to slow dramatically. No, I am not blaming the oil companies. They make big bucks, but it was not them that drove prices up. It was commodities traders driving up the price because they could. Unfettered trading of options was allowed to happen, and it was traders rather than supply and demand that drove these costs up. This was the beginning of massive problems to follow.
Overall economic policy on risky lending practices took all of the heat, and while that was indeed a problem, it was lack of cash flow that got these high risk loan holders into trouble. The cash flow stopped, people could no longer pay, the economic machine began to grind to a halt, and that meant that trouble was around the corner.
Stock Shock looks at the issues surrounding Wall Street through the lens that is Sirius XM Radio. Fans and investors in satellite radio will enjoy the movie, but the lessons taught in this movie will resonate with anyone invested into the market. You will learn about short trading, what owning shares actually means, and even how the shares you think you own have actually been lent to someone else that is betting against your investment.
I can say that I enjoyed the movie, and was pleased with the end result. If you are interested in seeing Stock Shock, you can order the DVD. Use "Tyler" as a promotional code, and you wont only get free shipping, but could become the lucky winner of a Sirius Soloist dock courtesy of TSS-Radio.
Position - Long Sirius XM Radio - Tyler Savery appears in Stock Shock The Movie