Reddit Documents a Surge of New Users to Site and WallStreetBets

Millions of new users have flocked to Reddit Inc. forums amid feverish trading activity spurred by discussion on the subreddit WallStreetBets, the company said on Friday.

“The fact that so many users decided to do this in such a short period of time is the amazing part,” the company wrote in a blog post.

“Notably between January 24th-30th, there was a 10x increase of new users viewing r/WallStreetBets,” Reddit said, adding that “the community has significantly increased by 5.6 million users over the past two weeks.”

Reddit disputed the idea that automated accounts were responsible for the surge in traffic. “This looks like a bunch of new users trying to engage in the community versus a new and awful surplus of ‘bots,’” according to the post. The Reddit analysis contradicts a statement made to CBS News by an anonymous moderator of the group, which suggested bots played a major role in the conversation.

The news comes as U.S. Securities Exchange Commission is investigating whether fraud played a role in the massive swings of GameStop Corp., AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. and other stocks.

According to Reddit, GameStop, AMC and silver were all key topics of conversation on the site. “After a brief speculative discussion into the intrinsic value of precious metals, the community spoke up and then doubled-down on fundamentals, meaning the vast majority of those silver posts are anti-silver,” the post said.

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