Cramer once said very few people or firms have been convicted of market manipulation in the financial markets. what does Cramer, bernie madoff,clinton, obama have all in common? All 4 are trained 'lawyers' by training. Now what is market manipulation? In the real market, price fixing, market colllusino, oligopoly, monopoly or shill bidding is illegal. ie. ---scalping is illegal too---. some one once told me he was charged trying to corner a market for certain product or service.and had to go to court in the 70's Theoretically, scalping tickets for concerts is 'illegal' but it's never enforced. putting fake bids and sell orders is illegal. Like shill bidding in auctions is illegal. Making defamatory press in the media or creating bad press to destroy price etc. is illegal. market manipulation is more prevalent than before since it's can no longer be Enforced..sherman act and market manipulation laws are toothless or not worth the paper it's writtened on is weakened by political corruption, legal corruption, lobbying by special interest groups etc.. market manipulation laws is like pot laws...everybody does it even if it's illegal. the punishment or fine for breaking market manipulation or pot laws is just cost of doing business. and is not seen as SERIOUS CRIMES. free markets means free from the above.