ASX suffers a technical hitch

THE BOURSE WHISPERER: The Australian Securities Exchange had one of its more interesting days of trading today.

The Exchange halted trading after a number of traders said they were unable to complete their transaction.

The halt lasted four hours, during which time investors were frustrated in their attempts to take advantage of earnings news and developments in Europe.

Eurozone leaders emerged from their meetings to declare they had made some ‘‘extremely important decisions’’ to try and fix the European debt crisis.

In the glare of daylight and television cameras European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet provided some insight to proceedings.

‘‘We have taken extremely important decisions in several aspects,’’ Trichet told the gathered media contingent.

‘‘All of this now requires a lot of work and a lot of quick work.’’

The reason for the glitch suffered by the ASX was still a mystery at the time this was being written, but needless to say there will probably some fat-fingered accountant somewhere with a lot going through his mind.

“The markets were halted at 10.05am when ASX detected a connectivity issue,” The Australian Securities Exchange said on its web site home page.

“ASX has worked with its technology vendor to resolve the issue.”

You would think that the mood at a conference with over 140 mining industry related companies would be sombre due to the glitch.

At the Mining 2011 conference in Brisbane the mood was, surprisingly, buoyant.

For many companies dotted around the exhibition room it was a chance to celebrate a day that their share price didn’t actually fall, which is more than many of them have been able to do recently.

Others weren’t so fortunate, however, with the reality of the situation being particularly stressful for companies such as Blackthorn Resources and MacPhersons Reward who both released extremely positive announcements to a stagnated trading floor.

Once order was restored the market took off like a lead pencil being shot from a third-graders tautened elastic band.

Blackthorn eventually closed the day up 22.5 per cent to close at 49c, while MacPhersons rose 5.17 per cent to 30.5c.