TOKYO – Japan’s financial regulator conducted an on-site inspection of the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Friday following a technical glitch that forced trading to be suspended at the exchange earlier this month.
The Financial Services Agency inspection is not affecting normal operations.
The stock exchange halted all trading on Oct. 1 – the first occasion that this had happened since the bourse switched to a fully electronic trading system in 1999 – after “a technical glitch occurred to distribution of market data,” according to the exchange’s operator, Japan Exchange Group.
The inspection by the FSA officials seeks to gather information and determine economic sanctions that may be imposed on the operator, public broadcaster NHK reported.
The technical glitch on Oct. 1 resulted in losses of around $300 billion yen ($2.8 billion) for the exchange due to operations that could not be conducted that day, according to local media estimates.
In a statement after the halt in trading, the JEG had said that “due to a hardware failure, the switchover from the failed device to the backup device did not work properly, and as a result, market information could not be distributed.”
“If the system were to reboot during the day, it would cause confusion for investors and market participants, which would make it difficult to execute smooth trading. Therefore, TSE has decided to halt all listed symbols entire today,” it added.
The bourse said it will check the current system settings as well as conduct drills to test the switch to the backup system, according to Kyodo news.
The suspension on Oct. 1 was the first since 2005, when trading was halted for more than four hours due to a failed system upgrade.
More recently, in 2012, Japan’s main stock market had to stop trading in shares of some companies on at least two occasions because of a failure of its backup systems.
Since 2010, the Tokyo Stock Exchange has been using a system developed with Fujitsu.
Shares of a total of 3,700 listed companies are traded in the various sections of the Tokyo exchange, which is the third largest stock market in the world in terms of capitalization.