SGX CEO apologises for disruption, says rebuilding trust a priority

SINGAPORE Exchange chief executive Magnus Bocker apologised for the latest market disruption, saying that the market operator takes full responsibility.

"We sincerely apologise to all our securities members and their customers for the inconvenience caused by the delay in market open this morning," Mr Bocker said in a statement.

"We are very appreciative of the continuous support and close cooperation rendered by our members throughout the resolution process. This incident has occurred on the back of the power breakdown on Nov 5 and we understand the market's frustration. This should not have happened and we take full responsibility. We are reviewing our processes to prevent any recurrence. Our priority is in rebuilding the trust that our members and customers have in us, and we seek their understanding and patience."

The Singapore stock market opened on higher ground after trading was delayed in the morning to resolve issues from a software glitch by SGX.

The Straits Times Index traded at 3,334.05, up by 11.73 points or 0.3 per cent, 12 minutes after the delayed open. SGX shares were flat at S$7.27 each.

Total trading volume after the first 10 minutes was 207.6 million shares worth S$145.3 million.

SGX on Wednesday delayed the opening of the stock market from 9am to 12.30pm because a weekend software update led to problems with client accounting systems that were hosted by the market operator. The delay was to allow member firms to reconcile positions and rectify any errors.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said the delay was "unacceptable" and warned that it could take supervisory action against the Singapore Exchange (SGX) if necessary.

"MAS has registered its disappointment and concerns with SGX over the delayed opening of its securities market caused by a software defect," an MAS spokesman said in a statement. "The lapse is unacceptable, coming within weeks of the recent power breakdown on Nov 5. MAS has instructed SGX board and CEO to do a thorough review to address the shortcomings that led to the lapse. MAS will not hesitate to take supervisory actions against SGX if necessary."

UPDATE: Singapore's small, mid-cap companies association calls for independent probe into disruptions

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