Investors rage as market surge crashes trading platforms


Investors have been left furious at missing out on the chance to trade after online share dealing platforms struggled to cope with demand as stock markets soared on Covid-19 vaccine hope.

Customers of Hargreaves Lansdown, Fidelity, AJ Bell and iWeb, took to Twitter, complaining they had been left without access to their investment accounts as technical issues dogged the platforms.

The announcement by pharmaceutical giant Pfizer (PFE.N) and German partner BioNTech (BNTX.O) that its experimental vaccine was more than 90% effective in preventing Covid-19 has sent global stock markets soaring.

The FTSE 100 is up 4.9%, with shares in some of the companies worst hit by the pandemic registering double-digit gains. Rolls-Royce (RR) led the way among UK blue-chips, up 54%.

Hargreaves Lansdown user Ross Henery took to Twitter to air his frustration.

Other Hargreaves Lansdown customers were similarly irate. 

Hargreaves Lansdown’s Danny Cox said the site had not crashed but admitted there were service issues.

‘We are experiencing our busiest ever day for web and app traffic, and as a consequence there are some intermittent service issues,’ he said. ‘We apologise for any inconvenience caused.’

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There was a similar issue on the AJ Bell platform, where Twitter users were being told: ‘Our team is aware of this particular issue and are working hard to fix it’. One customer said the problems were ‘the last straw’.

Fidelity Personal Investing also apologised to customers struggling to log on to the platform.

‘Due to increased volumes, some customers are experiencing intermittent service issues,’ said a spokesman.

‘Customers can use our mobile app or call our customer services line. We are working hard to resolve this as soon as possible and we apologise for the inconvenience.’

That followed complaints from multiple users of the platform struggling to access their accounts as stock markets surged. 

Users of iWeb were equally frustrated, with customers detailing their problems in trading on Twitter.

AJ Bell and iWeb were approached for comment.





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