All You Need To Know About Share Market Timing

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  • 06 Feb 2023

The two major stock exchanges in India—the Bombay stock exchange (BSE) and the National stock exchange (NSE)—follow a similar set of timings. All other minor stock exchanges in different cities usually follow suit. The share market stays closed on Saturdays and Sundays. It, however, stays open from 9.15 am to 3.30 pm for the rest of the days without any breaks for lunch or tea.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to convert physical shares to demat.

What is share market timing? It’s that time window that tells us for how long stock market stays operational. The Indian stock exchange is usually divided into three sessions a day: the normal session, pre-opening session, and the post-closing session.

Here’s a brief outline of a day in the stock market:

Normal session:

It runs from 9.15 am to 3.30 pm. Trading activities are mostly performed during this part of the day. This session adheres to the bilateral matching system. It means that a transaction concludes when the buying and the selling prices are equal.

Pre-opening session:

This session starts at 9.00 am and ends at 9.15 am. Though it may not look it, this brief window plays a vital role in controlling the volatility of the market. This session can further be divided into three sub-sessions:

Order entry session:

This session takes place between 9 am and 9.08 am. It’s the time for placing orders to buy or sell stocks. The investor can also modify any previously placed order during this period.

Order-matching session:

The four minutes between 9.08 and 9.12 is the time for matching the orders. When the orders are considered compatible? It's the point when the maximum price of the buy order is equal to or more than the minimum price of the sell order.


The remaining three minutes from 9.12 to 9.15 are kept as a buffer so that the transition from the pre-opening session to the normal session is smooth.

However, these 15 minutes are often not utilised by the traders. This makes the market more volatile.

Read more:How the share market works in India

After the normal session, the market closes at 3:3 0pm. In the following 10 minutes, the closing prices of stocks are determined. The weighted average of the prices between 3:00 pm and 3:30 pm is declared as the closing price.

The post-closing session:

The duration of this session is from 3.40pm to 4.00 pm. Traders can place buy or sell orders at the closing price throughout this session. It should be noted that the pre-opening and the post-closing sessions work only for cash trading.

The timing for commodity trading (MCX) is between 10 am and 11.30 am. For the agri-community (NCDEX), normal trading takes place from 10am to 5pm. In these cases, the weekends—Saturdays and Sundays—are off.

You can place trade orders even after the closing time, but the orders stay pending. These orders fall under AMO—i.e. after the market order.

Apart from these regular share market timings, the Indian stock market runs a special trading session around Diwali. It’s known as Mahurat trading. The exact timing for this session is declared a few days before the festival. It usually takes place in the evening.

In a recent declaration, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has declared that stock exchanges can extend the session for the trading of equity derivatives till 11.55 pm.

Last but not least

Timing is everything whether you are a day trader, who trades within a day, or a position trader engaging the capital in a stock for an extended period. From placing the order to buying or selling stocks, correct timing puts you in an advantageous position.

If you plan to open a trading account, you can opt for Kotak to secure handsome profits.

Read more: Difference between stock market and share market

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