Cuban, Cooperman: Curb High-Frequency Trading

High-frequency trading threatens to harm investor confidence and needs to be curbed, billionaire investor Mark Cuban and hedge fund manager Leon Cooperman said Tuesday on CNBC.

(Read More: Ex-Insider Calls High-Frequency Trading ‘Cheating’)

On “Fast Money,” Cuban criticized the idea that a simple solution such as a kill switch could have stopped the high-frequency trading issues that contributed to the flash crash, problems with the Facebook and BATS IPOs and the Knight Capital trading fiasco.

(Read More: Pisani: Do Markets Need a Kill Switch?)

“The idea of a kill switch is just ridiculous. Because by the time you hit the kill switch, it’s just too late.

(Read More: 'Knight-mare': Trading Glitches May Just Get Worse)

And it’s really just the NYSE just protecting their own, just CYA on their part,” he said. “They’re at the root of this problem, despite the fact that people don’t want to admit it.”

Cuban argued that as a for-profit entity, the New York Stock Exchange looks to take care of its best, biggest customers and increase sales, rather than watching out for the average investor.

“There is no value to HFT, period. End of story,” he said.

(Read More: Flash Crash 2 Could Come at Any Time: Analyst)

The New York Stock Exchange declined to comment when contacted by CNBC.

Last month, Cooperman of Omega Advisors co-authored an op-ed piece in the Financial Times titled “SEC Must Put a Stop to Casino Markets.”

In it, he wrote: “Due to a lack of economic incentives, traditional market makers, who used to act as shock absorbers in times of volatility, have exited the business, only to be replaced by ‘automated market makers.’ Their operating model is based on paying brokers to direct trades to them — called ‘payment for order flow’ — and then using powerful computer systems to make a small profit per share on turnover of these trades.”

On “Fast Money,” Cooperman blamed high-frequency trading for driving the public out of the stock market and raising the cost of capital to business.

“How many incidences does the SEC have to see? Flash crash, Knight securities, the BATS exchange couldn’t open their own offering, Facebook,” he said. “Seventy percent of daily trading volume has nothing to do with fundamental research. It’s high-frequency trading and the slicing and dicing of ETFs.”

Cooperman suggested reinstating the 1938 uptick rule, which banned the short-selling of securities other than in an uptick.

“It served the market well for 70-odd years,” he said.

Written by Bruno J. Navarro, Producer.

Trader disclosure: On Oct. 2, 2012, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s “Fast Money” were owned by the “Fast Money” traders: Steve Weiss is long WLP; Steve Weiss is long BAC; Steve Weiss is long AIG; Steve Weiss is long QCOM; Steve Weiss is long SODA; Steve Weiss is long HK; Steve Weiss is long M; Steve Weiss is long TOT; Steve Weiss is long VZ; Steve Weiss is long T; Steve Weiss is long VOD; Steve Weiss is short AAPL PUTS; Steve Weiss is short CAT; Steve Weiss is short RIO; Steve Weiss is short BHP; Steve Weiss is short AKS; Steve Weiss is short VALE; Josh Brown is long SPY; Guy Adami is long C; Guy Adami is long GS; Guy Adami is long INTC; Guy Adami is long AGU; Guy Adami is long MSFT; Guy Adami is long NUE; Guy Adami is long BTU.

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