Updated on August 8th, 2019
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A “Day” Time In Force is the most commonly used expiration for buy and sell orders. In fact, this is usually the default expiration. A “Day” Time In Force tells your broker to buy or sell a stock only during the regular market hours of a single trading day.
With regular market hours for the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ being 9:30am to 4pm ET, if you submit an order during this time frame with a “Day” expiration, your broker will attempt to execute it before the 4pm closing bell. If your order cannot be filled before this time, your broker will automatically cancel it. If an order is submitted after 4pm with a “Day” expiration, it will not become active until the opening bell at 9:30am the next trading day.
But what if you want your order to last during extended hours as well? To keep your order active before or after regular market hours, you have the option of using a “Day + Extended” expiration. This tells your broker to execute your order, if possible, during either pre-market, regular, or after market hours of a single trading day. These few extra hours of trading can potentially serve as an advantage for investors looking to trade a stock based on news or earnings results in extended hours.
There are a couple of catches with this type of expiration though. One catch with a “Day + Extended” expiration is that you are only allowed to use Limit Orders. Another catch with “Day + Extended” orders is that the times you are allowed to trade in extended hours vary between each broker. For instance, even though pre-market hours technically begin at 4am, one broker might allow traders to start trading at 7am while another at 8am. Extended hours trading can also be risky due to higher price volatility, increased chances of competing against professional traders, and an overall lack of buyers and sellers during these times.
Ultimately, you should use “Day” or “Day + Extended” Time In Force types to place an order that you only want to last for one trading day. If your order is not executed and automatically canceled by your broker, you can submit the same or a different order for the next trading day.
Stocks: The Basics