Spamming for Dollars

Jonathan Zittrain

Why would someone send out thousands of identical email messages on the same day, touting a particular stock? Apparently, because spamming works—for the spammer, if not for the ordinary investor.

Jonathan Zittrain, Professor of Law in the Faculty of Law, and Professor of Computer Science in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, explains how these scams function in Spam Works: Evidence from Stock Touts and Corresponding Market Activity.

Prof. Zittrain reports that he has found "convincing evidence that stock prices are being manipulated through spam," observing that "stocks experience a significantly positive return on days prior to heavy touting via spam." The paper examines the impact of spam on stock trading and proposes "several regulatory and industry interventions" to deal with the problem.

You can find a complete list of Prof. Zittrain's works in DASH here.