Glitch or Cyberattack Behind Tokyo Stock Exchange Breakdown?

Citing a hardware breakdown, the Tokyo Stock Exchange halted trading for the entire day Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020 with serious rippling effect on exchanges in Sapporo, Nagoya, and Fukuoka as well. Japan Exchange Group Inc., which operates the TSE, said it would announce any updates on resumption of trade on Friday later. All buying and selling has been frozen on the first day of the new quarter.

The impact is likely to stem the positive investor sentiment created following a buoyant U.S. stock market performance overnight and closures in other major markets in the region, including China, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan.

Moreover, the shutdown of stock exchange will dent the investor confidence in the Japanese markets system.  Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato, the top Japanese government spokesman, said the disruption was “extremely regrettable.”

3rd Largest stock Exchange 

There were no indications that the outage was related to hacking, said the operator of the $6.15 trillion stock market that is the third-largest in the world behind the U.S. and China. Its daily turnover has averaged about $22 billion over the past year.

But glitches are common to Tokyo stock exchange since 2000. Its president resigned in mid-2000s over such computer issues and eventually the faster Arrowhead system, developed by Fujitsu was introduced in 2010. However, a glitch halted trading in 241 securities in 2012 and another a year later.

As of now, Fujitsu spokesman Takeo Tanaka made no comment on details of the present glitch though he denied that it was a cyberattack. The glitch has raised many eyebrows since a cyber attack in New Zealand spurred trading halts for over four days in August.


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