If you’re new to the stock market, there are a few things you should be aware of before beginning trading. Knowledge will enable you to make better investment decisions and reduce your exposure to risk.
The stock market opens Monday through Friday at 9:30 a.m. and closes at 4 p.m. The exchanges are closed on three holidays: Independence Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve.
1. What Time Does the Stock Market Open?
Before beginning trading, there are a few things you should be aware of. One such detail is when the stock market opens each day.
When it comes to market opening times, several factors such as local time zones and holidays must be taken into account. In the United States, most exchanges are open from 9:30 am until 4:00 pm Eastern Standard Time (EST).
Other countries around the world follow different schedules. For instance, London Stock Exchange opens at 8:00 am and closes at 4:30 pm Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).
Every market has a distinct opening time. If you’re trading stocks from the US or abroad, knowing when your favorite exchange opens is essential to being successful as a trader.
The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq both begin each trading session at 9:30 a.m. EST with an automated bell signaling the start of trading for the day. Later that same afternoon, another bell rings to signal the conclusion of trading for that particular session.
In addition to regular trading hours, there are other times when the stock market is open for extended trading. These include pre-market trading which typically occurs from 4 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. and after-hours trading which typically occurs from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m.
Some exchanges, like the London Stock Exchange, remain open year-round; however, they do close on certain holidays which can make trading on those days more challenging. To find out which exchanges are closed and when they will open again, look at their websites or contact your financial advisor for more details.
2. What Is the Stock Market?
The stock market is a marketplace where traders buy and sell shares of publicly traded companies. It is one of the four primary financial markets, along with bond, commodities, and derivatives exchanges.
The stock market exists to enable investors to purchase shares in publicly-traded companies and participate in their profits. Furthermore, investing in stocks can provide you with long-term growth of your money, particularly if you invest in dividend-paying stocks.
There are various ways to invest in the stock market, such as opening a brokerage account. Before you begin investing, it’s essential to comprehend how it functions.
Unlike other stores, the stock market is an open forum where buyers and sellers negotiate prices. This negotiation process ensures fairness for both parties involved.
At any given moment, supply and demand for each security determine its price. This process, known as price discovery, plays a significant role in the success of the stock market.
In addition to offering you the ability to buy or sell shares of your favorite companies, the stock market also serves as a barometer for the economy as a whole. Prices on different stocks often shift in response to economic reports, news events, and political developments.
Many professionals work in the stock market, from equity research analysts to fund managers. These individuals analyze publically traded companies and attempt to forecast whether their shares will rise or fall in value. They may be employed by a brokerage firm, mutual fund company, hedge fund or investment bank and make their predictions based on past experiences, current conditions of the company and other factors.
3. What Happens When the Stock Market Closes?
At the conclusion of a trading session on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) or Nasdaq, the trading bell usually rings at 4:00 p.m. EST – though these times may differ between exchanges.
At regular trading hours, investors from all backgrounds buy and sell stocks to reach their financial objectives. These sessions take place Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET and the floor is bustling with thousands of investors as the bell rings to begin trading.
However, pre-market and after-hours trading sessions on the stock market tend to be much less crowded. While these markets provide investors with access to stocks not available elsewhere, they come with significant risks as well.
Once the stock market closes, investors must complete their trades. This can be done by buying back a stock at its original price or selling it at a higher valuation.
Some traders take advantage of the after-hours market to purchase shares if they’ve heard about news that hasn’t yet made headlines. For instance, if a company releases its quarterly earnings report after the market closes and investors become excited by its performance, stocks may surge in value on these secondary markets.
Mychal Campos, Head of Investing at Betterment, warns against this approach. If the good news starts to trend negatively overnight, investors could be in for a rude awakening when they try to rejoin the stock market the following day.
In 2023, the stock market will be shut down on 10 holidays including Independence Day, Black Friday and Christmas Eve. Additionally, some days in April will be observed as Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.
4. What Happens When the Stock Market Opens?
On most days of the week, the stock market is open for business from 9:30 am to 4 pm ET. However, there are also other types of trading that takes place outside the regular session timeframe. Pre-market and after-hours markets have become popular among investors as they offer an opportunity to trade without a large crowd around you.
Finding the best stock deals may not be a simple task, but with the right tools in hand you can make some serious money in the financial marketplace. By using various online tools, you can learn how to spot potential opportunities before they appear and maximize your investments when markets reopen. The key lies in making informed decisions and sticking to an effective strategy over time; if done right, your investments should yield a healthy return. The right tips make all the difference between losing and winning portfolios; top stock brokers provide guidance on finding companies to buy or sell shares of as well as provide tools necessary for success.
5. What Happens When the Stock Market Closes?
Typically, the stock market closes at 4 p.m. Eastern Time; however, this isn’t the only time you can trade stocks; there is also a pre-market and after-hours trading window which allows investors to buy and sell stocks outside regular market hours.
Pre-market and after-hours markets tend to be less crowded than their regular counterparts, making it easier to trade smaller shares of a stock but also making prices less predictable.
For instance, if a company releases positive earnings news after the market closes, its stock may rise in value. However, when trading resumes the following morning, you could discover that the news wasn’t as encouraging as initially believed during after-hours trading.
Due to an imbalance of buy and sell orders at market opening, stocks could open at a much lower price than what they traded at during after-hours trading.
Closing prices are closely watched and often used as a gauge of a stock’s success. Unfortunately, they can also be mismanaged by unscrupulous traders who use them to artificially boost the price of an investment.
Furthermore, closing prices may not be a reliable indicator for micro- and small-cap stocks with limited liquidity. These stocks may experience large price changes on relatively little volume, so it is essential to take other factors into account when making investment decisions.
There are exceptions to this rule, such as when a stock’s valuation appears unsustainable. If this occurs, the exchange will halt trading in that stock to give buyers and sellers time to adjust their orders. Usually, this process is swift and efficient.