US stock exchanges halted all trading in companies listed on the Nasdaq on Thursday after a "serious" technical issue stopped it from quoting share prices accurately.
Wall Street was prepared for a day of volatile trading following the release of Federal Reserve minutes on Wednesday night, but instead it was thrown into paralysis as the Nasdaq, which is favoured by some of the world's top technology companies, went dark for hours, the Telegraph reports.
Apple, Facebook and Microsoft were all affected by the sudden freeze, which struck at 12.14pm. Partial trading resumed at 2.45pm and the exchange was back online completely by 3.25pm.
Nasdaq said it "will work with other exchanges ... to investigate the issues of today, and we will support any necessary steps to enhance the platform", later adding that the halt was due to a "connectivity issue" that has been "identified and addressed".
The Nasdaq is America's second-largest stock exchange behind the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). According to BATS Global Markets it has accounted for 28% of all shares traded so far this month.
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