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Attention investors! Year end trading schedule for stocks and bonds

Written By | Dec 23, 2019
year end trading schedule

Christmas image by Michelle Maria from Pixabay.  Public domain, CC 0.0 license.

WASHINGTON – Investors: Once again, it’s the most wonderful time of the year, as that old song goes. In late December, the year-end holiday season looms large. It’s all about  Christmas, of course, even though our Deep State friends have long campaigned to de-legitimize its name. After which, in few short days, the old year passes and New Year’s Day launches a new one. As legendary Cleveland Indians’ broadcaster, Jimmy Dudley might have said, 2019 “is roundin’ third and headin’ home. Which brings us to our 2019-2020 year end trading schedule.

Year end holiday stock and bond trading days and settlement days

It gets tricky this time of year when it comes to settlement days, trading days, etc. So, if you’re an active trader or investor, keep this 2019-2020 year end trading schedule handy. It might also help you schedule mandatory or elective IRA distributions or plans, since the Feds have just passed a law that makes some sudden but key changes. Particularly for new or pending retirees nearing their age 70 ½ mandatory first distribution. The has a good compendium of the substantial rule changes here. We’ll offer an easy-to-follow breakdown later this week.

But now down to the Christmas Holiday nit and grit: a veritable plethora of trading hours and related issues for both US and Canadian investors as we celebrate Christmas and head into the New Year.

Year End Trading Schedule for the US and Canada
Tuesday, December 24, 2019 
  • US equity, options, mutual fund and futures markets close at 1:00 p.m. ET. Bond markets close at 2:00 p.m. ET.
  • Pre-Market trading takes place as usual. But After-Hours begins begin at 1:05 p.m. ET and concludes at 5:00 p.m. ET.
  • Orders placed after market close will post a trade date of Thursday, December 26, 2019.
  • Requests to move money received after your broker’s standard cut-off times will generally not get processed until Thursday, December 26, 2019. Be sure to check with your broker to confirm if this may be of concern.
Wednesday, December 25, 2019 
  • All US and Canadian markets are closed for the Christmas Holiday.
  • No Pre-Market or After-Hours trading sessions will take place.
  • Those trading on global exchanges should check with their brokers before the holidays to make sure what rules may be in effect on international exchanges
Thursday, December 26, 2019 
  • US markets re-open. Pre-Market and After-Hours trading sessions take place at the usual times.
  • Mutual fund orders investors placed after market close on Tuesday, December 24, 2019 or while markets were closed Wednesday, December 25, 2019 will get a trade date of December 26, 2019.
  • Canadian markets are again closed, this time in observance of Boxing Day. However, dually listed Canadian stocks will trade in US markets on Thursday, December 26, 2019.
Tuesday, December 31, 2019 
  • US equity, options and futures markets are open as usual.
  • However, bond and mutual fund markets will close at 2:00 p.m. ET. Orders placed after the markets close will reflect a trade date of January 2, 2020.
  • Pre-Market and After Hours trading sessions take place as usual.
  • The Canadian markets are open as usual.
  • Requests to move money received after standard cut-off times will generally not be processed until Thursday, January 2, 2020. Be sure to check with your broker to confirm if this may be of concern.
Wednesday, January 1, 2020 
  • All US and Canadian markets are closed for the New Year’s Day holiday.
  • There will be no Pre-Market or After-Hours trading sessions.
  • Those trading on global exchanges should check with their brokers before the holidays to make sure what rules may be in effect on international exchanges
  • Depending on your brokerage firm, due to year-end processing, some market data may temporarily display previous business day pricing information on positions, balances, etc. Processing generally stabilizes by January 2 or 3. If you have questions, be sure to check with your broker.
Year end trading schedule box score: Equities orders to settle as follows.
Trade Date Settlement Date
Monday, December 23, 2019 Thursday, December 26, 2019
Tuesday, December 24, 2019 Friday, December 27, 2019
Monday, December 30, 2019 Thursday, January 2, 2020
Tuesday, December 31, 2019 Friday, January 3, 2020


CDN financial and business publishing schedule

Following Wall Street’s year end trading schedule somewhat, CDN Business will run our regular financial column on an irregular basis over the next 10-12 days so we can celebrate the holidays ourselves. There’s another reason for this as well:  the generally deceptive trading action in stocks and bonds over the last few days of the old year. This often wildly illogical action is due largely to the fact that many active traders and investors will be offline as well, just like us. This makes certain generally reliable stats and chart moves temporarily unreliable. We prefer not to be driven offsides during the ending days of each year.

However, should something unusual occur, we’ll post a column on the issue or event as soon as we can.

Also read: Trump impeachment? Who cares? US stocks score another record rise

Meanwhile, a big thanks in advance to our readers and commenters who weighed in in 2019. We look forward, as we’re sure you do, to more positive market action in 2020, although we suspect the New Year may begin with a profit-taking dip.

But not to worry. For now, let’s try to relax and forget all about Mr Market and his weird habits. And let’s forget about all those Congressional nutcases as well. Happily, for the next few days at least, they’re all in recess anyway, so no fresh harm is likely to unfold until the New Year.

Instead, let’s enjoy families and friendship this Christmas season.

And with that, we wish all our CDN readers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year as we ring in the year 2020.

– Headline image: Christmas image by Michelle Maria from Pixabay. Public domain, CC 0.0 license.



Terry Ponick

Biographical Note: Dateline Award-winning music and theater critic for The Connection Newspapers and the Reston-Fairfax Times, Terry was the music critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2010) and online Communities (2010-2014). Since 2014, he has been the Senior Business and Entertainment Editor for Communities Digital News (CDN). A former stockbroker and a writer and editor with many interests, he served as editor under contract from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and continues to write on science and business topics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (BA, MA) and the University of South Carolina where he was awarded a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and co-founded one of the earliest Writing Labs in the country. Twitter: @terryp17