A GIANT data centre linked to the New York Stock Exchange could be shut down.

The data processing centre in Gardiners Lane South, Basildon, could be scrapped by stock market rival Nasdaq, who are bidding to take over New York Stock Exchange in a £7billion deal.

If that goes ahead, Nasdaq said it would look to make cuts to New York Stock Exchange’s data centres, to help make £452million worth of savings.

Tony Ball, leader of Basildon Council, said: “I very much hope it doesn’t close. It employs a lot of people and is an asset to the borough.”

In 2009, the Echo revealed the secretive depot had been bought by the stock exchange. Imperium 315, a company affiliated to the stock exchange, paid £40million for the building, on the site of the former York International factory. The site contains ultra-fast computers allowing for a process called High Frequency Trading, where stocks and shares are purchased and sold in the space of milliseconds.

Both the stock exchange and Nasdaq did not respond to the Echo’s enquiries on the future of the Essex data centre.

Another trading giant, Deutsche Borse, is in the running to merge with the New York exchange, but it is understood the Basildon centre would be more likely to stay open under this arrangement.

The building was originally built as a massive logistics centre, but was sold in 2008 with a confidentiality clause banning the disclosure of the new use or owner.