SIA says Wall Street ready after minor problems fixed : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

SIA says Wall Street ready after minor problems fixed

NEW YORK, Jan 1 (Reuters) - The U.S. securities industry on Saturday said all major U.S. stock and bond exchanges and their clearing houses are fully operational and are ready for business on Monday although a few glitches appeared overnight. There were instances of trade reports showing 1900 instead of 2000 and a decimal point problem that changed net asset valuations, a spokeswoman for the Securities Industry Association told Reuters. The decimal problem caused $35 to show up as $3,500, for example.

Those issues have been solved, said Margaret Draper, the assistant vice president of corporate communications at SIA. She declined to say which institutions experienced the problems and said it was unclear if it was Y2K related.

"It isn't over. Trades still haven't been entered but early indications are good. We're extremely optimistic," she said. "Everything is pointing to business as usual."

The SIA, which has coordinated the securities industry's Y2K preparedness, reported shortly after midnight that all operations were running smoothly in the initial minutes after computers switched into the new year.

The 48 institutions, including the exchanges, financial utilities, the electronic communications networks, monitored by the SIA overnight made only minimal calls to the SIA helpdesk over night, the SIA said.

"Information was collected beginning this morning beginning at 6 a.m., and there have been only isolated issues indicated that were or could have been Y2K-related," Donald Kittell, executive vice president of the SIA said in a statement issued at 10 a.m.

"These have already been fixed. Getting through the first hours of 2000 has been a major step in a successful transition."

The Y2K bug stems from mainly older computer systems programmed to read only the last two digits of a year. If the glitch is left uncorrected, some systems misread 2000 as 1900, causing systems to malfunction or crash.

Trades entered on Wednesday, Dec. 29, which will complete the three-day clearance and settlement cycle on Monday, Jan. 3, 2000, included processing information with dates of 2000.

The SIA will continue to monitor the situation until at least Jan. 7, when trades made Jan. 3 will have cleared as well.

Draper said the exchanges have also tested for trading volume, and are not anticipating problems if high trading volume occurs during the first week of 2000. In the final week of 1999, trading volumes were extremely low on the major exchanges.

"The exchanges have volume tested. That shouldn't be a factor," she said.

-- kc (, January 01, 2000

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