NYSE Euronext (NYX:US), the operator of stock exchanges in Paris, Brussels, Lisbon and Amsterdam, said a technical malfunction stopped users from entering orders and delayed the start of trading on its European bourses.
Equity markets opened at 9 a.m. London time, an hour later than normal. The breakdown affected stocks, bonds, exchange-traded funds, warrants and certificates on Euronext’s cash markets and some trading in derivatives, New York-based NYSE said in an e-mailed notice to clients.
“This has created a big problem,” Eric Hassid, a trader at Aurel BGC in Paris, said in a phone interview before the delayed start of trading. “We can’t trade. We have covering to do and we can’t do it.”
Today’s glitch is not the first technical fault to have affected Euronext’s markets. A breakdown at its Liffe unit, Europe’s second-largest derivatives market, on Oct. 1 halted trading in some equity and commodities derivatives. In October 2011, malfunctions stopped the publication of some European equity indexes on two occasions in less than a week. Euronext suffered four breakdowns during June and July 2011.
NYSE Euronext, which also operates the New York Stock Exchange, is being bought by IntercontinentalExchange Inc. (ICE:US) Regulators blocked a takeover by Frankfurt-based Deutsche Boerse AG (DB1) last year, citing concern over competition in derivatives and clearing.
After the delayed start of trading, France’s benchmark CAC 40 Index (CAC) rose 0.3 percent to 3,864.64 at 10:50 a.m. in Paris. The AEX in Amsterdam also gained 0.3 percent, while Portugal’s PSI-20 Index added 0.1 percent and Belgium’s Bel20 gauge advanced 0.2 percent.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index traded near a six-week low as investors awaited policy announcements from the European Central Bank and the Bank of England.
“The delay has aggravated already nervous traders ahead of a big day of events,” Ishaq Siddiqi, a market strategist at ETX Capital in London, wrote in e-mailed comments.
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