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LSE’s FTSE stock market suffered the longest outage in years

(Ap) — A technical glitch delayed the start of trading on Friday, the UK blue-chip FTSE 100 and midcap equity indexes, nearly two hours into what was to be the longest break in one of the world’s top stock exchanges in the eight-year period.

FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the entrance of the London Stock Exchange, London, united Kingdom. Aug 23, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

The London Stock Exchange suffered a technical software problem, which delayed the opening of the market to 0840 GMT), a spokeswoman, said in an e-mail. The markets generally open at 0700 GMT.

In a statement on its website, it said that it was still investigating the issue.

The outage affected hundreds of stocks in some of the UK’s biggest companies, including Shell, Unilever, and HSBC, and the BHP Group, for a total value of $2.8 billion.

Traders were frustrated by the recent power outage during a hectic week in the world financial markets, affected by concerns over a US recession in the U.S.-China trade spat.

“Investors will have the desire to have a quiet Friday after a week of turmoil in the markets, driven by fears of a recession,” said AJ Bell, investment director Russ Mould.

“It just seemed like such a peaceful interlude, it was on the cards, to the LSE’s technical problems.”

A large number of the participants were on a holiday, which would have limited the impact of the failure.

Paul Mumford, a fund manager at Cavendish Asset Management, said that it would be a major embarrassment for the LSE in the midst of the sharpening of competition, rising costs and increased regulation, inter-exchange operators.

LSE shares, traded on the FTSE 100 was up 0.9% in early deals, in line with the rest of the FTSE 100.

This is the second failure in the LSE, which produces about 5 billion pounds ($6.1 billion) worth of volume each day, in a little over a year ago.

In June 2018, and the opening auction has been postponed due to a technical glitch, but trading resumed after an hour.

Prior to that time, the market was closed until midday on one day in the month of February 2011.

Reuters, the News’ parent, Thomson Reuters, and has a 45% stake in financial data and news provider, Refinitiv. Thomson Reuters will own 15% in the LSE, after the proposed deal closes.

Report by Shashwat Awasthi, Noor Zainab Hussain and Muvija in Bengaluru and Josephine Mason in London; editing by Jason Neely and Keith Weir

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