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Overnight trading: How to trade the market after hours

Is there a strategy investors may use to benefit from market shifts outside standard market hours? Yes, there is. 

Overnight trading has grown increasingly popular in the stock market, with traders looking to extend their trading hours and boost their probability of profiting from overnight movements. True to its name, overnight trading allows investors to buy securities and other investments after markets close until markets open again in the morning.

Today, we will look into some of the strategies for doing overnight trading. But before that, let’s explore the importance of overnight trading in the stock and forex markets.

What is overnight trading?

The term “overnight trading” describes transactions between an exchange’s closing and opening times. The kinds of exchanges that investors choose to engage in could impact overnight trading hours. Not every market allows trading overnight.

Overnight trading covers an expanded time frame and involves more than just stocks due to the rise of sophisticated trading tools and global marketplaces.

After-hours trading 

Extended trading hours enable traders to bid before or beyond typical business hours, usually through alternative trading systems (ATS) or electronic communication networks (ECNs).

F&O (Futures and options) markets 

You may use commodities or stock indices to speculate on the future value of an asset and make trades accordingly.

While the market is closed, overnight traders may respond to news that breaks during non-business hours. Event-specific factors that may significantly affect financial product prices include economic data, earnings releases, and geopolitical developments.

Stock trading is open from 3:45 p.m. to 8:59 a.m. on the BSE during overnight trading hours. The NSE is open for business during overnight trading from 3:45 p.m. to 8:57 a.m. The time window for placing an AMO (After Market Order) in currency trading is 3:45 p.m. to 8:59 a.m. 

Overnight gap trading

Gap trading is worth mentioning when we’re talking about overnight trading. The “gap trading” method takes advantage of price gaps that emerge when the market reopens after an extended period of closure. 

Many factors that affect pricing while the market is closed are the reasons for these price variations. Gap traders determine entry and exit locations and gaps and their causes. They keep an eye on their holdings and manage risk as well. One may use gap trading in various markets, including stocks, currency, and commodities.

Options and futures trading overnight

Overnight trading is also possible in derivative instruments such as futures and options. Futures are contracts that specify how much of an asset or commodity will be bought or traded at a fixed price at a certain point in the future.

On the contrary, trading options provide the ability, but not the responsibility, to purchase or sell an asset at a predetermined price within a certain time window.

In India, trading options overnight take place from 3:45 p.m. until 9:10 a.m., along with futures and other derivatives.

Overnight forex trading strategy

For FX traders who want to profit from the world market around the clock, overnight trading is an increasingly prevalent strategy. Traders may use this method to enter and exit trades overnight when trading volumes are lower, and marketplaces are less unstable. 

Forex trades may be executed by traders via broker-dealers at any time because of the overlap of North American, Australian, Asian, and European markets’ operational hours.

However, before jumping into overnight forex trading, there are a few things to consider. These include the ideal currency pairings to trade, the time to trade, and how much you stand to gain or lose.

Significance of overnight trading strategy

The electronic trading platform (ETP), a digital trading system, is used for overnight trading on the Indian equity market. In a nutshell, here is how it works:

  • Easy entry to the ETP 

Access to the ETP is necessary for traders and investors to engage in overnight trading, and brokerage companies often provide this service.

  • Placing an order 

Participants in overnight trading may place various orders, such as market, limit, and stop orders, just as they do during standard trading hours.

  • Method of execution

The exchange matches trades made during nighttime sessions electronically. Similar to normal trading hours, the system allocates pairs of orders to buy and sell depending on price and time priority.

  • Variability in price

Price volatility increases because nighttime trading often experiences fewer trade volumes than normal hours. This is because there may be fewer participants, which might lead to more significant price fluctuations.

  • Limited securities

Not every stock can be traded overnight. The stocks traded during overnight sessions are usually limited to a small number of highly liquid stocks.


You may trade beyond the normal trading hours using the overnight trading function. This is a great option for those who are too busy throughout the day to research the industry. Being familiar with the many forms of overnight trading, such as stocks, futures, options, and the foreign exchange market, is also important.


What is overnight vs intraday?

Overnight trading is trading that takes place outside of the normal trading hours of the primary exchange, while intraday trading is trading that occurs within the same day and does not involve holding positions overnight.

What is an example of overnight trading?

An example of overnight trading is buying a stock at the close of the US market and selling it at the opening of the European market, hoping to profit from the price difference or the overnight news.

Why do stocks gap up overnight?

Stocks gap up overnight when there is a significant increase in demand for the stock after the market closes, usually due to positive news events, earnings reports, analyst ratings, or supply and demand imbalances.

Is it good to trade forex at night?

Trading forex at night can be good for some traders who prefer lower volatility and less competition, but it can also be challenging due to lower liquidity and higher spreads. The best currency pairs to trade at night depend on the individual risk tolerance and trading strategy of the trader.

What is the overnight gap risk? 

Overnight gap risk is the risk of a significant price change between the closing and opening of a market due to news or events that occur while the market is closed. It can affect the value and liquidity of securities or commodities that are traded overnight.

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