Readers know that BloggerNews has been following the story of the shady characters who have strung together a misinformation campaign against stocks in the taxi medallion financial sector, to profit by harming hard-working legal immigrants, who came here seeking the American Dream.  It’s a cynical and heartless exercise in and of itself, but that James Hickman, Gordon Gossage and an-about-to-be-revealed third conspirator, have lied from the start, should tell readers the kind of people we’re dealing with here.


After some digging and talking with a few well-placed sources, BloggerNews can exclusively present exactly how the Triumvirate of Deception came together.


Gordon Gossage was a driver for Lyft, by his own admission. He made some strange appearances at local taxi-rideshare public hearings in Boston. Why a middle-aged Lyft driver would appear at these hearings, telling cab drivers their industry is dead, seemed very odd to us.  That’s because we believe he was being paid by Lyft to undermine the taxi medallion financial industry.  He plugs it extensively on his blog.
Based on publicly available records, we determined that Gossage lived three blocks away from James Hickman in Boston.  We believe Hickman called for a Lyft one day and met Gossage as his driver.  They get to talking about rideshare, natch.
Gossage then gets a great idea about getting in on Uber by shorting the taxi medallion financial industry, from a WSJ article on June 14, 2014.Then a new name appears in the story, and it’s our third conspirator, a man named Oleg Uritsky.
On October 20, 2014, Gossage writes about Oleg Uritsky selling all his Boston taxi medallions, and what a genius he is for some presciently predicting the struggles of the Boston taxi medallion financial market.
Uritsky thanks him in the comments section of the post, and they begin to communicate.  They become friendly by early November.  Gossage tells Uritsky that he wishes he had shorted the taxi medallion financial sector back in 2013.  Gossage introduces Uritsky to Hickman around that time.
That’s when they hatch the plan to short the sector.  Uritsky likely puts up most or all of the capital as he is likely the wealthiest of the three.  Hickman writes up the first, drawing on his days as an analyst. Gossage contributes to the reports using his knowledge of rideshare.
They initiate their short position from roughly mid-November to mid-December of 2014, based on what we know about the short interest on the taxi medallion financial industry’s most high-profile company.
Date Short Interest Avg Daily Share Volume Days To Cover Price
1/30/15 1,646,507 171,693 9.6 $9.48
1/15/15 1,664,967 203,398 8.2 $9.50
12/31/14 1,758,795 271,236 6.5 $10.01
12/15/14 1,768,569 419,031 4.2 $10.16
11/28/14 1,106,576 483,262 2.3 $9.99
11/14/14 745,397 243,234 3.1 $10.97
10/31/14 625,306 151,311 4.1 $11.55
10/15/14 796,037 200,589 4.0 $11.12
9/30/14 865,298 161,037 5.4 $11.66
9/15/14 1,056,478 196,981 5.4 $12.51
8/29/14 1,218,411 230,851 5.3 $12.10

With the position established, they are ready to release the paper.  We suspect Gossage’s wife, a PR maven,  peppers the NY media to cover the release of the first short-selling report from the non-existent “HVM Capital”.  The rest is history.

The trio’s desperation is evident from the start, but becomes worse, because they made several amateurish mistakes.
Mistake #1:  They got into the short position far too late.  The market had already discounted the stock to below book value, leaving them little room for error.  Judging on the price history, we think the average short execution is around $10.50.
Mistake #2: They chose a stock with a high dividend.  Two dividends payments have already been issued since the short position was launched, and short-sellers must pay the dividend to those that are long.  That lowers their average entry price to about $10.  For them to make any real money, their entire thesis must play out and the taxi medallion financial industry must literally go out of business.  So far, it appears to have been barely touched in New York, the city where they have focused their short-selling activity.
Mistake #3: Why are they bothering with this when shorting opportunities worth far more than $10 are all over the place?
All this explains their desperation, and why Hickman is repeatedly lying and misleading readers.  We’ve also learned that, the primary website where he published, issued him a quasi-ban.  Apparently, he was attempting to censor so many comments on his articles that management told him to knock it off or he’d be banned.  He hasn’t had a comment appear on the site in over two months.
Unfortunately, the high-quality website, appears to have approved him as an “independent contributor”.  BloggerNews is baffled how could approve submissions by someone this duplicitous and dishonest.  Clearly they are not bothering to fact-check Hickman’s articles.As for Uritsky, we have some information on him still to come….



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