What time does the market open? The trading hours of the world’s top 20 major stock exchanges:

The top 20 major stock exchanges are different from one another, and one difference they have is in the time they start and end their trading session.

Being a hands-on investor means knowing and understanding the know-how and related stuff regarding the stocks exchanges and securities. Venturing into the capital market requires careful consideration and monitoring. It requires both time and effort, so you as an investor need to be updated on its opening and closing time.

By being informed of the opening and closing time of a stock exchange, you are empowering yourself as it gives you a “schedule” to better plan your trading activities. Investing and trading are now easier than ever, so you might be tempted to directly invest in foreign stocks in other exchanges. While it is impossible to buy them directly, engaging in foreign stock exchanges can still be a pain. Buying foreign stocks is more complex than purchasing domestic shares in your home country, requiring more effort. Aside from brokerage services limitation, the time of trading is another consideration.

The world is big, and so are the top 20 major stock exchanges. The stock exchanges of North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania are different from one another. As they are located in different regions of the world with their own cultures, there are some differences in the time set-up of their trading sessions. So, if you are an investor who is curious about the trading hours of the other exchanges aside from those in your country, read this article until the end.

 

What is a stock exchange?

A stock exchange is not an institution that owns shares or stocks. Instead, it is a place where traders and investors trade and interact. It is where stock sellers connect with stock buyers. Stock exchange ensures that trading will be orderly. In addition, it ensures the efficient dissemination of price quotes in the exchange. However, though it is called a stock exchange, other securities are also traded in a stock exchange, such as bonds, commodities, and equities.

 

What are stock market trading hours?

Stock market opening and closing vary from each country. In addition, the days they are open are also different due to various reasons like local working hours (time zones) and culture. Most stock exchanges open early in the morning, typically at around 9 am of their local times. Most of them also close in the evening, with some exceptions during their local holidays.

For most of the world’s stock exchanges, trading happens from Monday to Friday (weekdays) and is closed on Saturday and Sunday (weekends) of each week. However, some stock exchanges have a different schedule, such as those located in the Middle East, like the Saudi Stock exchange, which is open from Sunday to Thursday, and the Tehran Stock Exchange, which operates from Saturday to Wednesday.

Aside from some slight differences in the weekly schedule, there are also differences in the operating schedule within the trading hours. Some stock exchanges close during the trading hours to give way for a lunch break. This lunch break typically lasts for an hour. This practice of closing within the day to allow lunch break is commonly seen on Asian stock exchanges though the London Stock Exchange is technically doing it too, albeit only for just two minutes, starting from 12 noon and ending at 12:02 pm.

Stock exchanges are also sometimes closed in weekdays due to some natural disasters or due to the observation of national holidays in the countries where they are located.

 

Why do stock market exchanges around the world have different trading hours?

Every stock exchange is different from one another, even those exchanges in the same continent are different from each other. Stock market exchanges have different trading hours due to various reasons. In a geographic point of view, the difference is brought about by the different geographic location. Stock exchanges are located on various parts of the world and that means different time zones too. So, the time of opening and closing would naturally be different.  

On the other hand, the differences are also brought by culture. Countries have different work cultures and customs so some starts earlier and others later, some have lunch breaks, while others don’t.  

However, the most salient reason why stock exchanges have different trading hours is probably to get and attract the greatest concentration of local and international investors and traders (sellers and buyers). By having a definite stock trading hour, stock exchanges ensure that there would be enough trading participants through out the session. Setting fixed trading hours also ensure that there would be concentrated liquidity between the opening and closing of the stock exchange, and concentrated liquidity scattered throughout a session is better than sporadic trades in a 24-hour basis.

If a transaction is made beyond the trading hours of a stock exchange, it is usually added to a line of deals that will be performed once the market opens for the day. If a trader does this, their transaction may slide from the time it was requested to the time it was performed. This happens when the value of the transaction change throughout the night and become different once the opening bell is rung. 

 

Trading Hours of the World’s Top 20 stock Exchanges

Below are the world’s top 20 biggest stock exchanges by market capitalization as of May 2021.



Trading Hours in North America

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

New York Stock Exchange

New York, United States of America

$26. 23

1

EDT

9:30 am

1:30 pm

4:00 pm

8:00 pm

No

Nasdaq Stock Market

New York, United States of America

$19.51

2

EDT

9:30 am

1:30 pm

4:00 pm

8:00 pm

No

Toronto Stock Exchange

Toronto, Canada

$2.62

9

EDT

9:30 am

1:30 pm

4:00 pm

8:00 pm

No

Trading Hours in South America

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

B3 S.A

São Paulo, Brazil

$1.17

19

BRT

10:00 am

1:00 pm

5:55 pm

8:55 pm

No

Trading Hours in Europe

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

Euronext Amsterdam

Amsterdam, Netherlands

$5.08

6

CEST

9:00 am

7:00 am

5:30 pm

3:30 pm

No

London Stock Exchange

London, United Kingdom

$3.83

8

BST

8:00 am

7:30 am

4:30 pm

3:30 pm

Yes 12:00 noon – 12:02 pm (local time)

Frankfurt Stock Exchange

Frankfurt, Germany

$2.11

13

CEST

9:00 am

7:00 am

5:30 pm

3:30 pm

No

Nasdaq Stockholm AB

Stockholm, Sweden

$1.95

15

CEST

9:00 am

7:00 am

5:25 pm

3:25 pm

No

Six Swiss Exchange

Zurich, Switzerland

$1.75

16

CEST

9:00 am

7:00 am

5:20 pm

3:20 pm

No

Trading Hours in Africa

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

Johannesburg Stock Exchange

Johannesburg, South Africa

$1.13

20

SAST

9:00 am

7:00 am

5:00 pm

3:00 pm

No

Trading Hours in Asia

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

Tokyo Stock Exchange

Tokyo, Japan

$9.21

3

JST

9:00 am

3:00 pm

Yes

11:30 am – 12:30 pm (local time)

Stock Exchange of Hong Kong

Hong Kong SAR, China

$6.76

4

HKT

9:30 am

1:30 am

4:00 pm

8:00 am

Yes 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm

Shanghai Stock Exchange

Shanghai, China

$6.56

5

CST

9:30 am

1:30 am

3:00 pm

7:00 am

Yes 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

Shenzhen Stock Exchange

Shenzhen, China

$4.83

7

CST

9:30 am

1:30 am

2:57 pm

6:57 am

Yes 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

National Stock Exchange of India

Mumbai, India

$2.57

10

IST

9:15 am

3:45 am

3:30 pm

10:00 am

No

Saudi Stock Exchange

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

$2.43

11

AST

10:00 am

7:00 am

3:00 pm

12:00 noon

No

BSE Limited

Mumbai, India

$2.22

12

IST

9:15 am

3:45 am

3:30 pm

10:00

No

Korea Exchange

Seoul, South Korea

$2.07

14

KST

9:00 am

12:00 am

3:30 pm

6:30 am

No

Taiwan Stock Exchange

Taipei, Taiwan

$1.59

17

CST

9:15 am

1:15 am

1:30 pm

5:30 am

No


Trading Hours in Oceania

Name

Location

Market Capitalization

(In trillions)

World Ranking

Time Zone

Opening Time

Closing Time

Lunch Break

Local Time

GMT

Local Time

GMT

Australian Securities Exchange

Sydney, Australia

$1.54

18

AEDT

10:00 am

11:00 pm

4:00 pm

5:00

No

Conclusion

Trading can be exhausting especially if you do not manage your time. And it could get more exhausting if you are planning on getting yourself into foreign exchanges aside from those in your own country. For all we know, you might be located on the opposite side of the world. But thanks to technology, this kind of problem is now more manageable than ever. But still, you need to be more flexible and creative with your time management to maximize the potential of trading hour schedules across the globe.