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Knight Capital Group cutting 5 pct of workforce

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Knight Capital, the market operator behind a technical blunder that sent shares of dozens of companies swinging wildly in August, plans to lay off about 5 percent of its work force.

The company last month agreed to sell itself to a rival, Getco, for $1.4 billion.

The automated trading firm is combining two sales teams and seeking to cut costs, the company said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday.

Knight Capital Group Inc. had 1,524 employees at the end of 2012.

The company, based in Jersey City, N.J., made headlines when a software glitch in its trading platform flooded the market with orders, disrupting trade for more than 100 stocks.

Knight has one of the most advanced platforms for trading brokerages. The Jersey City, N.J., company takes stock trading orders from companies like TD Ameritrade and E-Trade and routes them to the New York Stock Exchange and other exchanges.

But the mishap cost Knight $461 million and it nearly sank the company, which lost three-fourths of its value in two days as investors dumped its stock. .

As a result of restructuring, the company expects to take a $9 million to $11 million pre-tax charge in the first quarter. Severance and benefit payments account for $8 million to $10 million of the estimated charge.