But, as you may have heard, that is changing.
Through alternate trading systems known as electronic communications networks (ECNs), individual investors may gain the option of buying and selling a select group of actively traded stocks, on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and NASDAQ over-the-counter market, beyond the regular market session.
Trading after market hours enables some individuals to eliminate the wait to implement investment decisions made after the close of the regular trading day, and react immediately to late-breaking business news and overseas events.
However, investors should be aware that extended-hours trading may be less “liquid” than trading in the regular daytime market. As a result, the prices of stocks may experience wider price swings than during regular daytime hours on traditional exchanges, including the NYSE and NASDAQ.
This may prevent an order from being executed at the desired price.
In addition, the following safeguards to protect individual investors are being built into after-hours trading systems:
It is likely that you will be hearing more about extended-hours trading in the weeks to come. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please consult your financial advisor.