The Dow Jones newswires had a ‘technical error’ which caused the portal to report several spurious stories including several headlines claiming Google was acquiring Apple for $9 billion, and that the deal was pre-arranged with Steve Jobs in his will.
Obviously, every element of the story is made up, but it’s pretty funny to see the temporal blip on Apple’s stock price, which briefly spiked up to $158. The fake stories have now been removed by DJ.
Whilst the contents of the story make it obvious that the news is completely fake, the existence of real-time high-speed trading means the jump to $158 was almost certainly caused by automatic computer algorithms rather than real people.
The erroneous headlines included news that Google employees would take over the Apple headquarters, receive 9 Apple shares for every Google stock owned and that the deal was set to close tomorrow.
The stock jump was quickly corrected in the following minutes. $AAPL is back to typical levels, around $156.
Update: Dow Jones provided the following statement on the matter.
“Please disregard the headlines that ran on Dow Jones Newswires between 9:34 a.m. ET and 9:36 a.m. ET. Due to a technical error, the headlines were published. All of those headlines are being removed from the wires. We apologize for the error.”