Refinitiv’s trading services hit by 5-hour outage

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Refinitiv, the data and trading provider owned by London Stock Exchange Group, suffered a five-hour outage on Thursday that knocked out some of its most widely used services.

The group said the problem affected its Eikon terminals, which sit on traders’ desks, its data platform, the FXall currency trading platform and World-Check One, which checks if potential customers could breach rules against money laundering, bribery and corruption.

The downtime affected some of its 400,000 users worldwide. Problems with Refinitiv’s services began at about 7.30am GMT, according to users, and were gradually brought back during the trading day. They were resolved by 1pm for customers in the Asia-Pacific and European regions, the company told customers.

The outage comes only weeks after LSE said it would have to spend more than analysts were expecting to integrate its $27bn purchase of Refinitiv and resolve longstanding technology challenges.

LSE shares suffered their worst one-day fall in more than 20 years after the group made the announcement, as investors fretted about the deal’s cost and long-term financial targets. The shares shrugged off Thursday’s glitch, however, rising 1.5 per cent and outperforming the broader London market.

“We understand and regret the inconvenience caused by this incident to you personally and to your organisation,” Refinitiv said. It was continuing to investigate the root cause, it added.

Earlier in the day, Refinitiv told customers that its investigations indicated the outage had been triggered by a problem with its authentication servers, which verifies users who are trying to log in.

LSE shares were boosted on Thursday by positive comments from Exane BNP Paribas, which pointed out that the LSE was deepening reinvestment for growth and changing Refinitiv’s pricing model to adapt to changing customer demands.

The majority of investment in Refinitiv will be focused on its trading and banking business, which encompasses Eikon and accounts for almost a quarter of group turnover. Eikon has been losing market share to rival Bloomberg for much of the past decade.

Hours-long outages on platforms run by data providers are relatively rare. In 2015 a combination of hardware and software failures led to a six-hour blackout on Bloomberg.

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