A Fast-Paced Stock Exchange Trips Over Itself

As reported by The New York Times: the stock market claimed an unlikely victim on Friday: one of its own.

Just as its shares started selling to the public for the first time, BATS Global Markets, one of the nation’s newest and largest electronic exchanges, halted trading on its own stock, after a series of technical glitches and errors in its system that also affected the shares of Apple and other companies.

A few hours after the embarrassing debacle, the financial company withdrew its initial public offering of stock. Investors who tried to buy the new shares will have their trades canceled, and owners who wanted to sell their stake will not be able to cash out for now.

While trading on the BATS exchange was back to normal in a few hours, the technical problems raise questions about the vulnerability of the broader market system, which has allowed new competitors like BATS to take on traditional exchanges like the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq.

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