All You Need to Know About the Over 25k Day-Trading Rule

Filip Dimkovski
By Filip Dimkovski
Edited by Taj Schlebusch

Published June 15, 2021.

All You Need to Know About the Over 25k Day-Trading Rule main image

A day trade is a deal that is entered and exited on the same calendar day. Pre-market, regular market and after-hours trading sessions are all included.

Because the word has become commonplace and is widely used, many people mistakenly believe that day trading means maintaining a position for a couple of days or even a week.

When actually, it stands for the purchasing and selling of calls on the same day in terms of options trading.

What Is The 25k Day Trading Rule?

The Pattern Day Trader Rule mandates that pattern day traders must maintain a minimum balance of $25,000 in their margin accounts at all times. If the margin account goes below the required 25k entity, the trader will be unable to purchase or sell assets until the account is restored to the minimum necessary amount.

Thanks to modern online brokers, the 25k doesn't have to be in cash anymore. It might consist of a mix of cash and qualifying securities.

How Does The Rule Work?

When a trader's margin account has more than $25,000 in equity, the trader can purchase and sell assets as many times as they like.

If a trader's account balance is under $25,000, they're limited on making a maximum of 4 margined day trades.

Several things might influence account equity. Therefore, knowing the precise amount in your account balance before day trading is critical. This is where many traders unintentionally violate the rule, as they're not informed about it.

In Conclusion: Workarounds

Nowadays, many online brokers offer workarounds for the 25k rule, but it's still a relatively strict protocol that needs to be respected.