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Google stock in weird, spurious plunge to $200 mark

Price reset after Nasdaq Google-whack

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For traders still reeling from Monday's massacre on Wall Street, it must have looked like manna from heaven: shares of Google for as low as $200.

Alas, it turned out to be a cruel mirage after Nasdaq OMX, which operates the Nasdaq Stock Market, canceled a block of transactions in late trading and reset the closing price to $400.52. Nasdaq blamed the mysterious bargain on "erroneous orders" that had been routed from another exchange. The decision to cancel the orders cannot be appealed.

Nasdaq, which is an all-electronic venue, didn't elaborate on the causes of the aberrant trades.

They started at about 3:57, just a few minutes before trading was scheduled to end. After trading mostly flat throughout the day, shares suddenly whipsawed wildly for a span of five minutes. As a result, trades of Google shares above $429.29 or below $400.52 that were executed between 3:57 and 4:02 have been canceled.

After appearing to settle well below $350, Google's closing price was reset to $400.52, up 5.1 per cent for the day.

Google investors weren't the only ones suffering a severe case of whiplash. Some trades of chemicals maker Rohm & Haas also had to be cancelled after briefly climbing as high as $100,000, according to Bloomberg News. It's still unclear exactly where the shares closed, but we're sure the number is considerably more terrestrial. ®

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