Google's earnings came out a few hours early last week due to a computer glitch. Some observers are blaming the glitch for a drop in Google's stock price. The fact that the earnings were awful is almost cited as an afterthought:
Among the litany of issues, the Internet search giant's profits slid 20% from a year earlier to $2.18 billion, or $6.53 a share. Revenue rose 45% to $14.1 billion, thanks to the incorporation of Google's new Motorola hardware unit.
Google lost $22 billion from its market capitalization last week until trading was halted.
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A similar thing happened during Facebook's initial public offering. The
NASDAQ computer system stalled, and trading began a half-hour later than its scheduled start of 11:00 a.m. EST. According to CNN:
The next half-hour was full of handwringing and confusion, until shares began trading around 11:30 a.m. Trading was fast and intense, with more than 80 million shares changing hands in the first 30 seconds.
Soon, some traders began complaining that it didn't seem like their orders were being completed. Others found that they were getting shares at a higher price than they expected.
NASDAQ, Facebook, and several investment companies are facing lawsuits from would-be shareholders as a result of that glitch.