Fat Finger Error


DEFINITION of 'Fat Finger Error'

A human error caused by pressing the wrong key when using a computer to input data. Fat finger errors are often harmless but can sometimes have significant consequences for example, if the wrong number is entered in performing a mathematical calculation.

BREAKING DOWN 'Fat Finger Error'

In the aftermath of the May 6, 2010, "flash crash" that caused a significant, rapid and unexpected drop in the Dow, one possible early explanation was fat finger error. The idea was that a trader had entered an order incorrectly, placing the order in the billions rather than the millions. In reality, such trading errors are unlikely because of safeguards implemented by brokerages and exchanges.

  1. Transposition Error

    A simple error of data entry. Transposition errors occur when ...
  2. Bona Fide Error

    An error that was unintentional; an "honest error." If a bona ...
  3. Error Resolution

    A procedure that allows consumers to dispute bookkeeping errors ...
  4. Accounting Control

    Methods and procedures that are implemented by a firm to help ...
  5. Accounting Error

    An error in an accounting item that was not caused intentionally. ...
  6. Contagion

    The spread of market changes or disturbances from one region ...
Related Articles
  1. Economics

    Portfolio Mismanagement: 7 Common Stock Errors

    Don't lose your shirt over these seven simple - and preventable - investment follies.
  2. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Tips For Controlling Investment Losses

    A profit/loss plan helps investors recognize mistakes and invest logically, rather than emotionally.
  3. Investing Basics

    7 Investing Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

    No investor is flawless. Here are some common investing fallacies and a step-by-step guide on how to avoid them.
  4. Options & Futures

    5 Common Mistakes Young Investors Make

    Starting to invest can be a scary process. Luckily, steering clear of common errors is half the battle.
  5. Retirement

    7 Common Investor Mistakes

    Find out how to avoid - or fix - these frequent investing errors.
  6. Options & Futures

    Common Bond-Buying Mistakes

    Avoid these errors made daily in bond portfolios everywhere.
  7. Insurance

    Four Big Investor Errors

    These simple lessons can cut your losses.
  8. Retirement

    Two Heads Are Better Than One With Your Finances

    We discuss the advantages of seeking professional help when it comes to managing our retirement account.
  9. Professionals

    A Day in the Life of a Hedge Fund Manager

    Learn what a typical early morning to late evening workday for a hedge fund manager consists of and looks like from beginning to end.
  10. Investing Basics

    5 Tips For Diversifying Your Portfolio

    A diversified portfolio will protect you in a tough market. Get some solid tips here!
  1. Which mutual funds made money in 2008?

    Out of the 2,800 mutual funds that Morningstar, Inc., the leading provider of independent investment research in North America, ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Does mutual fund manager tenure matter?

    Mutual fund investors have numerous items to consider when selecting a fund, including investment style, sector focus, operating ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Why do financial advisors dislike target-date funds?

    Financial advisors dislike target-date funds because these funds tend to charge high fees and have limited histories. It ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What licenses does a hedge fund manager need to have?

    A hedge fund manager does not necessarily need any specific license to operate a fund, but depending on the type of investments ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Can mutual funds invest in hedge funds?

    Mutual funds are legally allowed to invest in hedge funds. However, hedge funds and mutual funds have striking differences ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. When are mutual funds considered a bad investment?

    Mutual funds are considered a bad investment when investors consider certain negative factors to be important, such as high ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Black Friday

    1. A day of stock market catastrophe. Originally, September 24, 1869, was deemed Black Friday. The crash was sparked by gold ...
  2. Turkey

    Slang for an investment that yields disappointing results or turns out worse than expected. Failed business deals, securities ...
  3. Barefoot Pilgrim

    A slang term for an unsophisticated investor who loses all of his or her wealth by trading equities in the stock market. ...
  4. Quick Ratio

    The quick ratio is an indicator of a company’s short-term liquidity. The quick ratio measures a company’s ability to meet ...
  5. Black Tuesday

    October 29, 1929, when the DJIA fell 12% - one of the largest one-day drops in stock market history. More than 16 million ...
  6. Black Monday

    October 19, 1987, when the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) lost almost 22% in a single day. That event marked the beginning ...
Trading Center