Nasdaq, the US high-tech stock market, has revealed that a computer problem at a stock trader resulted in massively bloated prices being posted last Friday morning.
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Nasdaq said almost 1,700 different stocks were affected by the problem and that trades using incorrect prices in almost 200 stocks could have taken place as a result of the computer glitch.
The incorrect prices were only displayed for 20 minutes before the system was rectified, according to Nasdaq. The trades completed during this time will be cancelled, with the buyers being refunded and the sellers holding onto their stock.
The problem was caused by an unidentified broker linked to the all-electronic Nasdaq system inadvertently putting out bids for stocks that were substantially higher than the prices at which those stocks normally trade.
As a result, some stocks which would normally trade for a few dollars a share were being quoted for almost $1,000 a share.