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May 18, 2020, 2:42 a.m. EDT

European regulators say they will end short-selling bans

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By Steve Goldstein

The Austrian, Belgian, Greek, French, Italian and Spanish securities regulators have jointly decided to end their short-selling bans that had been in place since the middle of March. "In a uniformly declining market, with considerable uncertainties about the future extent of the decline, an increase in short selling could have had a procyclical influence that the AMF wanted to avoid by implementing this exceptional measure. Since the implementation of the ban, the Authority has observed a progressive normalisation. Markets have partly reduced their losses, trading volumes and volatility have returned to levels that are still high compared to mid-February, however this reflects market participants' uncertainties in the current context," said the statement from France's Autorité des Marchés Financiers. The bans will expire at the end of Monday.

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