An Afternoon Trade

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An afternoon trade window for M1 Plus customers

  • M1 customers who are M1 Plus members now have access to two trade windows: 10:00 AM and 3:00 PM ET, every day the NYSE market is open.
  • M1 Plus members whose account value is $25,000 or more can trade during both windows; if your account value is less than $25,000, you can trade during one or the other window, per day.
  • The new flexibility gives investors greater control over their money and lets them take action when they perceive a benefit.

Eligible M1 users with M1 Plus membership now have access to two trade windows during every day markets are open: a morning trade window at 10:00 AM ET and an afternoon trade window at 3:00 PM ET.

Who can trade during these windows?

  • M1 Plus members with an account value of $25,000 or more in their accounts may trade during both windows.
  • M1 Plus members with an account value of less than $25,000 in their accounts may trade during either trade window.
  • Those with standard M1 Finance accounts continue to trade during our morning trade window at 10:00 AM ET.

Why these rules? We put them in place to make sure we’ve followed FINRA’s regulations for day trading. FINRA offers strict guidance around what’s called “day trading,” which it defines as “the purchase and sale, or the sale and purchase, of the same security on the same day in a margin account.”

Further, FINRA notes that anyone who carries out four or more day trades within five business days is a “pattern day trader.” And FINRA requires that pattern day traders maintain paid securities valued at no less than $25,000 in their trading accounts.

The M1 Team is mindful of this rule for the benefit of all M1 customers—so our customers can focus on their investing. So in order to comply with FINRA’s rules, M1 must also require a $25,000 minimum account balance.

Where to find trade windows in the M1 app

Ready to plan your next trade? Open the M1 app on your mobile device and go to the “Invest” tab. Swipe up on the drawer at the bottom of your portfolio screen, then scroll until you see “Next trade window” (see Figure 1).

From here, you can…

  • Make a deposit.
  • Turn auto-invest on or off.
  • View the next trade window.
  • See whether you’re eligible for the next trade window.
  • View your upcoming trades.
  • Sort your portfolio by various features (gain, symbol, value, etc.).
  • Edit your Pie(s).
  • … and more!

From the M1 Finance desktop dashboard, you can view trade windows by clicking into the Portfolio tab. Look for the “Upcoming Trades” label, which will appear on the left below your Pie(s) (see Figure 2).

How to trade with M1’s new trade window

Your buy and sell transactions will execute depending on the type of M1 account you have (M1 Standard or M1 Plus) and the time you make changes to your portfolio.

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If you have a standard M1 account, your trades will always go through during the standard morning trade window. If you make changes to your portfolio (including deposits, withdrawals, buy/sell transactions, or changes to your target allocations) before 10 AM ET, your trades will go through that same day. Otherwise, your trades will go through during the next available morning trade window.

If you’re an M1 Plus member, you have more options available. Your trades will go through during the next available trade window, whether it’s in the morning or in the afternoon. If you have more than $25,000 in your Invest account, you can participate in both trade windows every day (based on FINRA’s requirements mentioned above).

Don’t forget that you can also schedule regular deposits into your different M1 Invest accounts automatically on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. Scheduled deposits will go through during the morning trade window.

Check out the table below to see how deposits work with the new trade window:

Still have questions about how trades work at M1? Refer to “How M1 Finance Trades” for additional details on our trading algorithm, and check out “Trade Window” to learn more about the morning and afternoon trade windows.

Why did we add an afternoon trade window?

We’re always listening to our customers to understand how we can make the M1 platform better. One request we’ve heard often is to add another trading opportunity every market day. We prioritize new features and updates based on customer feedback, and our afternoon trade window is the latest example.

But it wasn’t just popular demand that pushed us to expand trading opportunities for M1 Finance customers. Adding an afternoon trade window also fits into our larger philosophy of empowering investors to be engaged with their finances. A second trade window can help investors have more control over their money.

It also gives investors more opportunities to take action based on market movements and their investing philosophy. For example:

  • If you forget to make updates before 10:00 AM ET, you don’t have to wait until the next trading day for your trades to take effect.
  • You can react to news that’s important to you (including IPO announcements) more quickly.
  • You can take action that aligns with your investing strategy when the market moves and you want to adjust your investments before the markets close that day

Another key benefit is for our members in Western and Mountain time zones: 10:00 AM ET is early in those regions (7:00 and 8:00 AM, respectively). If you live in the Western US and aren’t a morning person, the 3:00 PM ET window lets you trade at a more comfortable time each day.

The afternoon trade window is a popular reason why M1 customers choose to pay the annual membership fee for M1 Plus. By unlocking this feature, M1 Plus members gain more control over when their investments trade. So while M1 Finance has a free platform that will remain free, M1 Plus is available as a premium to customers who want to engage further with their finances with additional M1 Plus tools and features, including:

  • An M1 Invest afternoon trade window.
  • An M1 Spend checking account with 1.5 percent APY interest.
  • An M1 Spend debit card that offers one percent cash back.
  • Coverage of ATM fees four times per month.
  • A 0.25% reduction on the already-low base rate on funds borrowed through M1 Borrow.

Let’s take a closer look at some potential scenarios where an M1 customer might want to use the afternoon trade window, which include the following:

  • Reacting to market movement: An investor who wants to adjust their portfolio based on market activity that happens after 10:00 AM ET could use the afternoon trade window to do so.
  • Implementing trades faster: An investor who misses the first trade window but wants to add, change, or delete slices in their investment Pies can now do so that day by using the second trade window.
  • Trading more flexibly: Investors living in the western part of the country can now make same-day trading decisions without setting an early alarm clock. The 3:00 PM ET trade window happens at 12:00 PM Pacific and 1:00 PM Mountain.
  • Capitalizing on buying and selling opportunities: M1 Plus customers who have at least $25,000 in their account can more quickly make trades when they perceive opportunities as being beneficial to their investment strategy.
  • Making account changes more quickly: The afternoon trade window will also make it possible for other account changes to take effect faster. Eligible investors will be able to use the afternoon trade window to transfer funds, remove a slice in their Pie, rebalance their Pies, submit buy or sell orders, and change their auto-invest settings.

An Afternoon Trade

An Afternoon Trade

Here’s an afternoon trade in the S&Ps (ES) that set up wonderfully today.

This is a common pattern we see on trend days. Trend days open at one extreme and close at the other. Today opened on its highs and closed near its lows. Trend days provide excellent trading

At times, though, trend days that start in the overnight market seem to die out in the American session. And, sometimes they do die out and just go into consolidation. But other times, like today, there will be a lengthy consolidation and then a return to the down move. Let’s see how this set up and played out.

Shortly after the US open, the market rallied off the morning lows and painted a morning high just before noon (A). The volume going into the highs appears climactic. This occurs at an earlier low (dashed line) painted during the European session (about 5:30 AM ET). Old support turned into resistance.

Later in the day, around 2:15 PM ET or so, the market revisits the highs at B. Note the volume. This is a big tell. There is no demand here (i.e., buyers not buying). No demand at significant resistance on a down day and price action indicating sellers are taking an interest—that’s a trade! Since there is no substantive support between the entry and the morning lows, we target our trade for the 2750 level.

Note the price action and volume on the way down. Buyers are being swamped. We have an opportunity to add about half-way down, or so.

Being oversold on lighter volume with SOT in the price action tells us it’s time to cover.

An Afternoon Trade

Today I’m going to share the thinking behind a trade I made back on November 28, 2020. When trading short-term binaries (i.e., 10- or 15-minute expiries), I usually trade the European session, which begins at 3AM EST and occasionally some of the New York session (begins at 9:30AM EST). However, I took this trade at 3:50PM at MarketsWorld.com on the EUR/USD. My schedule was simply better suited to trading at a later time on that particular day.

I made this trade based off attention to a basic price level, represented as the red line in the image above. The trade was taken on the 15:50 bar (3:50PM). I set an alert at that price level based on the resistance that was seen at the 1.2942 level just after midday. Once I received the alert signal on my trading platform, I looked at the screen and noticed that price had come up to that level relatively quickly in the past fifteen minutes based on the time of day (New York afternoon tends to be slower than the morning or during the course of the European session). I decided to wait and see if the level would be breached. But I saw that price was holding pretty well at 1.2943 or so and was actually wicking back down to 1.2942, suggesting that the resistance formed just a few hours ago was probably going to hold. I decided to take the trade just before the close of that candle at 1.2942 and just over five minutes later I had a 3-4 pip winner.

Now you might be thinking that if the resistance held twice, why wouldn’t I have taken a trade at 1.2942 once it got back to that point a third time? If you notice, the retracement off of 1.2942 was very weak, only coming down six pips or so. That tells me that when price gets back up to 1.2942, it’s probably going to blow through it. There was a very small wave of selling based on that previous resistance. But given that the down move was so small and hadn’t reached back down into a previous area of support, that suggested to me that this currency pair had a tendency to keep going up. Sure enough, once 1.2942 was touched again, the level was almost immediately broken, and it went up ten pips alone in that five-minute candle.

Whenever you’re looking to trade off price levels, no matter how strong it may seem or how steadily it’s held in the past, ensure that you’re not trading it after a weak retracement, as was the case outlined in the chart image. Moreover, I would also be very wary of trading price levels against a very strong overall recent trend.

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