Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN) – The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) – the capital market watchdog –has ordered the country’s two bourses to suspend their trading on Sunday, SEC member Yasin Ali said.

“We’ll sit with stakeholders on the same day to discuss the present volatile market and decide the date and time of resumption of the trading,” Mr. Ali said at a press briefing in its office on Thursday.  

Trading at both the country’s bourses resumed at about 1:00pm in accordance with the regulator’s earlier decision and the main market barometer, the DGEN, lost 600 points within five minutes, a record time in the history of the bourses.

However, according to the circuit breaker introduced by the SEC Wednesday last, the trading was to be automatically suspended with the fall of 225 points. But the circuit breaker did not work on the day since the DSE software was not capable of responding to the SEC circuit breaker in time.

The DSE said the market plunged 600 points while calculating the DGEN manually.

The CSE also witnessed a 795-point plunge in about 15 minutes after trading was resumed, prompting small investors to resort to violent protests.

Among the issues traded in the DSE during the short span of five minutes, 172 declined, eight gained and two remained unchanged.

Thursday’s total turnover value was BDT 680.8 million during the five minute session. Meanwhile DSE has reduced the trading session from four hours to two hours – from 1:0 pm to 3:0 pm local time.

As the capital market was shut for the second consecutive day on Thursday, the infuriated investors took to the streets demanding “immediate resignation” of the top bosses of DSE, SEC and the central bank for their failure to bring about stability in the market.

The protestors vandalized several vehicles, ransacked a leading broker house and engaged in sporadic clashes with police that brought the activities of the capital’s bustling financial hub Motijheel to a complete halt.

BBN/SI/AD-21Jan11-1:42 am (BST)