Technical glitch forces NYSE to cancel trades

THE New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) was forced to cancel trades in several shares yesterday after a technical glitch by market maker Knight Capital triggered dramatic stock price movements.

The US exchange identified “irregular trading” in 140 shares in the opening 45 minutes of trade, but ultimately cancelled trades in just six shares. Most of the stocks affected were not well-known, such as the tiny Wizzard Software whose shares soared to $14.76 after closing the previous day at $3.50.

Knight Capital, which buys and sells stocks to provide liquidity to the markets, admitted “a technology issue”, forcing it to send clients to rivals to complete their stock orders. The firm, which suffered a $35.4m trading loss on Facebook’s market debut, saw shares plunge 33 per cent to a nine-year closing low.

The NYSE said its circuit breakers, introduced by the SEC following the 2010 flash crash, operated normally.