Note from the Publisher: During a lunch session with our CEO, we were discussing the plight of his daughter whose Delta flight was delayed on Monday by over 6 hours as a result of the power outage that crippled the airline worldwide for a time. How could this happen, we wondered. He then reminded me of another technology vulnerability that occurred when a squirrel shut down trading on the Nasdaq, which has recently declared itself to be a fintech firm. I did some research on the story and as it turns out, a squirrel actually brought down the markets – not once, but twice – first in 1987 and again in 1994! Could it happen again? Here’s a great recap from 2013 on the adventurous but untimely deaths of two squirrels who made their mark on financial history………………
“An ‘undisclosed technical glitch’ shut down trading on more than 2000 issuers on the Nasdaq today, including heavyweights such as Google, Microsoft and Cisco.
Glitches in computer algorithms have led to so called flash crashes in recent years, but you have to go all the way back to the 90’s for a time when the Nasdaq was down for this long.
On August 2nd, 1994 a squirrel chewed into a power line in Trumbull, Connecticut, where the Nasdaq’s computer center is located, shutting down trading for 34 minutes.
Here’s the thing; this was actually the second time it happened. On December 10th, 1987 another stray squirrel shut down trading for 87 minutes.”