London Stock Exchange: live with Linux
The London Stock Exchange has announced that the main exchange is now live trading with a Novell SUSE Linux based system, following last step set-up procedures on Saturday 5 February.
Known as the Millennium Exchange and developed and named by MillenniumIT, the new system uses a C++ based matching engine developed by MillenniumIT. Previously the LSE had used the Microsoft .NET based TradElect platform, last upgraded by Accenture in 2007. Competition over the course of the past few years between exchanges seeking to provide the very short trading latencies required by modern automated trading systems was behind the decision to move to a new system with a different technology base. MillenniumIT, originally a Sri-Lankan company, is now part of the London Stock Exchange Group, having been acquired by the group in October 2009.
The changeover was originally planned for 1 November 2010 and the LSE had trialed the new system on the Turquoise Trading Platform, the LSE's dark pool anonymous trading venue, in October 2010. As a result of this test, LSE announced world record breaking trading speeds, prompting a flurry of counter claims of faster systems from competing exchanges. Later problems with system overloading prompted concerns over scaling and capacity, resulting in the changeover being delayed. The LSE also appears to have been the target of two major attacks in 2010, which are now being investigated.
The move to Linux seems to be something of a trend for stock exchanges as it was recently announced that the LSE and Canada's TMX, already a Linux-based exchange, would merge their trading systems, and that the Johannesburg Stock Exchange would also move to Linux.