ASIC investigates ASX over day-long trading outage

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ASIC investigates ASX over day-long trading outage

Inquiries turn official.

Australia's corporate regulator has opened an investigation into the outage that brought the share market to a standstill last week.

The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) revealed the probe on Monday, which it acknowledged was "appropriate" given ASIC’s role as the supervisor of trading on domestic markets.

“ASIC has confirmed to ASX that it is conducting an investigation into the ASX Trade outage on Monday 16 November 2020,” the exchange said in a statement.

“ASX acknowledges that this is appropriate given ASIC’s regulatory oversight. ASX takes its obligations very seriously and will cooperate fully with ASIC.”

The outage, which took place shortly after the ASX opened last Monday, was blamed on “software issues” on the new equity trading platform's first day, despite extensive testing.

It is one of the worst glitches to hit equity trading in recent years, with the last comparable disruption experienced back in 2016.

At the time, ASIC labelled the outage of “significant concern” given the criticality of the ASX to Australia’s national economy.

It said an evaluation of whether relevant requirements under the Corporations Act were followed, as well as its obligations under its Australian Market Licence, would take place.

The ASX also used the update on Monday to confirm that it had successfully applied a ‘fix’ to ASX Centre Point, which has been down since last Tuesday.

Centre Point is the country’s only dark order matching system, and sits within the ASX Trade system.

 “Given ASX’s commitment to provide 24 business hours’ notice, Centre Point will recommence tomorrow, Tuesday 24 November 2020,” the ASX added.

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