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Wed, Jan 25, 2006 - Page 12 News List

Trading times cut to prevent crashes

AFP , TOKYO

The Tokyo Stock Exchange said yesterday it will cut the trading time for scandal-tainted Internet firm Livedoor to the final 90 minutes of the trading day.

The decision was part of the bourse's attempt to avoid a system crash due to massive sell orders after the scandal. Four high-profile, young Livedoor executives were arrested on Monday on charges of illegal securities trading and cooking the books to hide losses.

"From Jan. 25, we will limit the trading time for [Livedoor shares] to between 1:30pm to 3pm. We may suspend trading of the shares, depending on their movement," the stock exchange said.

The headline Nikkei index took a nosedive in what is now called "Livedoor shock," after investigators raided Livedoor offices on Jan. 16.

The stock exchange took the unprecedented step of closing 20 minutes early on Jan. 18 to prevent a system crash due to the avalanche of selling.

Since then, the bourse has shortened its afternoon session by 30 minutes as a precautionary measure until the market becomes less chaotic.

The Nikkei index rose 288.24 points or 1.88 percent yesterday to 15,648.89. The broader TOPIX index of all first-section shares gained 24.53 points or 1.54 percent to reach 1,612.43.

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