Euronext Stock Trading Resumes After Three-Hour Outage

Trading in all stocks and derivatives on Euronext NV markets shut down for three hours, with some glitches continuing after the close, in the biggest outage to hit the exchange operator in two years.

Stocks including L’Oreal SA, LVMH and Kering SA in Paris were halted as of 9:49 a.m. Paris time on Monday, with Euronext markets in Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal and Ireland also affected. Companies on those exchanges make up about 22% of the components in the benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 Index. Trading in Euronext’s other market, Norway, wasn’t affected.

Euronext Stock Trading Resumes After Three-Hour Outage

A software issue caused the breakdown, the Paris-based company said in a statement. Stock trading resumed at 12:45 p.m. followed by derivatives at 12:50 p.m., Euronext said. Warrants and certificates won’t resume trading today, the company said.

Later in the day, Euronext decided to cancel all trades that occurred after 5:30 p.m. Central European Time on all asset classes except commodities due to technical issues, it said in a statement. The decision came after unusual share-price swings at the end of trading on Monday.

The issues adds to a string of glitches that have bedeviled global stock markets in recent months. The Tokyo Stock Exchange halted trading for an entire day Oct. 1, the worst-ever outage in the world’s third-biggest equity market, because of a failed switchover to backups following a hardware breakdown. Mexico’s main stock exchange, the Bolsa Mexicana de Valores, halted on Oct. 9 because of a technical issue.

German operator Deutsche Boerse AG was hit by two major outages this year, in April and July, that hobbled trading in derivatives and stocks in several central and eastern European countries, with both outages caused by a faulty software from a third party.

For Euronext, Monday’s outage is the broadest since trading was stopped on Oct. 29, 2018, for a technical problem tied to what the company called its “market monitoring tools.” In September 2019, Euronext also halted trading in equity options in Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris.

“In the last 12-18 months we have seen a raft of technical problems with respect to technology,” Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK Plc, said on Bloomberg radio. “It suggests to me there’s a potential for a little bit of underinvestment in terms of the technology.”

The outage comes just as Euronext Chief Executive Officer Stephane Boujnah is touting how the company’s Optiq technology platform will benefit Borsa Italiana, the Italian exchange that Euronext has agreed to buy. On a call with reporters this month he talked about gaining synergies from moving the Italian market on to Optiq and of the enlarged group having 25% of all European equities trading.

Euronext and two Italian lenders this month said they will pay more than 4.33 billion euros ($5.1 billion) to buy Borsa Italiana from London Stock Exchange Group Plc.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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