Just how much can a software glitch cost you? Ask Knight Capital, because they lost $440 million in just 45 minutes, when a newly installed trading software went haywire. That amount is nearly double the company's second quarter revenue and could be enough to put them out of business.
The colossal screw up happened when the company "accidentally sold all of the stocks it bought Wednesday morning." The Times reports:
The problem on Wednesday led the firm's computers to rapidly buy and sell millions of shares in over a hundred stocks for about 45 minutes after the markets opened. Those trades pushed the value of many stocks up, and the company's losses appear to have occurred when it had to sell the overvalued shares back into the market at a lower price.
This isn't the first time a computer error has caused massive losses on the stock market—in fact Knight took it on the chin during the NASDAQ Facebook IPO fiasco as well. [New York Times]