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Fidelity offers potential free trades after outage

Fidelity is offering restitution to clients after a website outage left millions of customers temporarily locked out of their accounts for more than two hours on Wednesday.

Pedestrians pass a Fidelity Investments office in Boston, Massachusetts Tuesday, May 8, 2007. Until recently, LBO dealmakers led by Henry Kravis, David Bonderman and Leon Black paid scant attention to the interests of shareholders as they gorged on a record $864 billion of publicly traded companies in the past three years. Even Boston- based Fidelity, the largest U.S. mutual-fund company, with $1.4 trillion of assets, and Baltimore's T. Rowe Price Group Inc., which manages $350 billion for clients, were told to take it or leave it when presented with takeover offers. Now, the balance of power is beginning to shift as investors, tired of watching LBO firms make as much as eight times their money buying and selling public companies, are demanding more. Photographer: JB Reed/ Bloomberg News

The brokerage firm said they would potentially offer several free trades, and waive commissions on select trades attempted during the outage. The claims are being evaluated on a “case-by-case” basis, the firm says.

“We’ll be reviewing each situation and then addressing them,” a Fidelity spokesman said Friday afternoon. “It depends on the individual case.”

The firm blamed the snafu on a “technical issue” but would not elaborate. A service alert on the company’s homepage had said, “We understand that some clients are unable to log in right now due to an internal technical issue… Please try again shortly.”

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