“Suspicious” human error halts LSE platform migration

The London Stock Exchange has postponed its switchover to a new super-fast trading system after a disruption yesterday raised the possibility of sabotage.

The LSE’s Turquoise subsidiary market, which is used for pan-European high-frequency trading, went down at 08:23 on Tuesday morning. Service was restored two hours later.

A statement released by the LSE last night suggested that the disruption may have been caused deliberately. "Preliminary investigations indicate that this human error may have occurred in suspicious circumstances," a spokesperson said.

Last month, the LSE moved the Turquoise market on to a new technology platform developed by MilleniumIT, a Sri Lanka-based software company acquired by the LSE in 2009. LSE claimed that the MilleniumIT platform is the fastest in the world, able to execute most trades within 400 microseconds.

But a few days after migrating, Turquoise began experiencing glitches. On 5 October, it delayed market opening by an hour due to technical problems.

The LSE had planned to roll-out its main market operations on to the MilleniumIT system this month, but has now delayed the switchover until next year. The market operator has already postponed moving to the new platform twice, saying it needed to give customers more time for testing.

Peter Done

Peter Done is managing director of Peninsula Business Services, the personnel and employment law consultancy he set up having already built a successful betting shop business.

Related Topics