A glitch that delayed share trading on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) for an hour appears to have been fixed.
Each index, from the FTSE 100 to the junior small caps, failed to begin trading as normal at 8am.
The development prompted confirmation that opening auctions had not taken place, with a “technical issue” being blamed.
The nature of the problem has not yet been revealed.
But deals started to flow from 9am, with the FTSE 100 rising 0.4% initially with no further trading difficulties being apparent.
Image: Market participants are said to have been left frustrated by the hour-long delay. File pic
Trading outages are rare – the LSE facing a four-hour suspension in 2011 after problems with an IT upgrade.
The most recent stoppage for a major trading centre occurred in 2015 when trading on the New York Stock Exchange was halted for over three hours because of administrative problems.
Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said of the LSE’s problems: “Judging by comments on social media there were some frustrated investors and traders out there eager to play the markets.
“While one hour’s delay may not seem much, the inability to trade will have been a nuisance to some people.
“However, the glitch is a useful reminder to investors that they should never rely on liquidity (the ability to trade what they want, when they want, in the size they want and at the price they want) because it is not always there – either for technical reasons or market ones (such as a panic or crisis).
“One positive of the delay is that it did give investors an extra hour with which to digest the corporate news announcements issued at 7am and work out which trades to place once the market did open.”
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Other interested parties suggested the problem was down to old systems creaking at the seams and demonstrated the need for investment.
Lev Lesokhin, vice president of strategy at software intelligence firm CAST, said: “The financial services sector as a whole is underpinned by decades-old, legacy IT systems which have been pulled together through various mergers.”