Tom Joyce, chief executive of US market making firm Knight Capital, is fighting to save the company after revealing its rogue computer trading programme had caused $440m in losses.
A software glitch caused chaotic trading in scores of US shares on Wednesday morning, and left Knight stuck with enormous numbers of individual stocks that it had not intended to buy. Now that it has sold them at a loss, the company is urgently seeking new funds to repair its capital position, Mr Joyce said.
Knight shares fell by one-third on Wednesday and halved again yesterday. The $440m loss compares to its most recent quarterly profit of just $3.3m, which was already weak because of declines in equity trading volumes.
“The software had a fairly major bug in it,” Mr Joyce told Bloomberg TV. “Technology breaks. It ain’t good. We don’t look forward to it.”