Apple, Google, Microsoft stocks fell prey to a data glitch

Apple, Alphabet, Microsoft and Amazon share prices swings wildly as trading closes early

Finance websites hit by glitch, show incorrect data for Apple, Amazon and other stocks

But they didn't appear on Nasdaq's own website, which showed the stocks' moves were far more muted in reality: Apple -0.4%, Amazon -1.5%, Microsoft -1.1%, eBay -0.9% and Zynga -0.6%.

Because of the glitch, some websites late Monday incorrectly showed Amazon (AMZN, Tech30) plummeting 87%, Apple (AAPL, Tech30) dropping 14% and Microsoft (MSFT, Tech30) jumping 79%.

The new prices triggered halts in numerous stocks in after-hours trading. "Any data messages received post 5:16 PM should be deemed as test data and purged from direct data recipient's databases".

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The Nasdaq figures were, we're told, not reflected in actual trading, only in the publicly listed prices, so no one lost any money.

The error could have occurred because of Monday's half-day of trading ahead of the July Fourth holiday, the Financial Times reported.

Third-party data providers pushed the wrong prices after the early market close, as the exchange operator was testing its pricing data feed. This data was then picked up by third parties - Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, Bloomberg, CNNMoney, etc. - and was briefly allowed to propagate before all share prices returned to normal.

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Several US media outlets said Bloomberg terminals, along with the Google Finance and Yahoo Finance portals were affected by the glitch.

The test data is sent daily, he said.

Nasdaq, the world's second largest stock exchange, said in a statement it was investigating the improper use of test data distributed by third parties. The company blamed third-party data providers.

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A Nasdaq glitch caused a number of major trading platforms to display Alphabet's share value as $123.47, some 86% below its true value at the time.

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