After selling a stock, how long does it take for the funds to "settle"?

Posted by waiting-for-the-roving-gangs on April 14, 2009 (12:46PM)

It shows up as "money" in my account, but when I go into another screen, it shows the funds involved as 'unsettled', so I presume, not useable at the moment. How long does it take for those funds to 'settle'?

Posted by BeretDude on April 14, 2009 (01:10PM)

The funds settle in 3 working days.   If you sell on a Monday the funds are settled on Thursday...and if you sell on Tuesday.. settled on Friday...etc.   But you can still buy stock with those unsettled funds.  The deal with that though, is that if you buy with unsettled funds, you can not turn around and sell what you just bought with the unsettled funds until they are settled.  So for instance, if you sold on Monday, you could buy again immediately after, but would have to hold what you buy if you use the unsettled funds, until Thursday before you could sell them again.

Posted by waiting-for-the-roving-gangs on April 14, 2009 (01:23PM)

Oh ok, thanks!

Posted by digital_man on April 15, 2009 (10:00PM)

Dude!!! Get a margin account. You won't have to wait for 3 days for the cash to settle to start trading again. You just need to have a minimum of $2000. I have made much more money since I did this.

Posted by waiting-for-the-roving-gangs on April 16, 2009 (04:23PM)

I'm a little scared of doing that right now...I'm very new at this, and don't want to get in over my head until I have my "sea legs". Once I have a bit of confidence though, I will look into that.
BTW, I'm not a dude, I'm just an old lady trying something new and different...:-). I really should put up a pic, right now I have the 'power fist' guy...

Posted by digital_man on April 16, 2009 (08:18PM)

Dude is just a term the kids say these days. It's kind of unisex in certain contexts.

Posted by DEtrader on April 17, 2009 (07:19AM)

I made the mistake of buying FAZ with unsettled funds, it was up 15-20% or something the next day. I went to sell and could not, then I tried to sell when it made its first big leg down and still could not. I tried to hold on and ended up losing close to 40%.  Needless to say, I will not buy on unsettled funds any more.

Posted by BeretDude on April 17, 2009 (07:29AM)

Your story is an example of why it is good to have enough cash money in your account to handle 'emergencies'.  I too have found myself buying with unsettled funds, only to have the stock go up enough to sell and could not without incurring the ominous '90 day time out for bad behavior".  Now, I try to keep enough money free for things like that, and hold the others until they are settled.   There is nothing wrong with buying on unsettled funds... just don't buy something that you expect to sell in less than 3 days.  :)

Posted by SoylentGreen on April 17, 2009 (12:04PM)

If you get a margin account you don't need to worry about settlement.

No one said you need to use the margin...

Owl001_thumb Brokerage Account

Posted by Owl on April 17, 2009 (07:53PM)

DEtrader said:

I made the mistake of buying FAZ with unsettled funds, it was up 15-20% or something the next day. I went to sell and could not, then I tried to sell when it made its first big leg down and still could not. I tried to hold on and ended up losing close to 40%.  Needless to say, I will not buy on unsettled funds any more.

 Yeah, you also shouldn't buy FAZ. World's worst investment.

Posted by El Dorado on April 18, 2009 (12:04AM)

I was approved for margin last week. The only way I knew was I started receiving letters in the mail about my trades. Any cash in the account is still listed as unsettled and still get the warning that I’m buying with unsettled funds. But after I buy the only unsettled funds are the cash that is left in the account, weird.

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