Stock Trading vs Day Trading - What’s the Difference

Stock Trading vs Day Trading – What’s the Difference?

Both stock and day trading comes with their sets of pros and cons. The main difference between the two lies in the position holding time. As the name suggests, day trading or intraday trading enables users to buy and sell shares within the same day. In other words, you sell your shares a few hours following the time you purchased them. The positions will open and close on the same day in intraday trading.

Stock trading, on the other hand, can include long-term investments. You might hold the shares for months and several years. The investor might hold these shares until the market price moves in their favorable direction. The difference between day trading and stock trading is that the latter requires more patience. Investors are supposed to watch their investment portfolios on a weekly and quarterly basis through the browsing platforms, while day traders focus on short-term trades that end within a day.


It goes without saying that day trading involves multiple trades in a few hours, which means the investor could generate more commission from such investments. Stock trading involves only a few transactions, especially if the investor holds the share for a long duration. The higher the number of transactions, the more commission you could generate from the transaction.

Research and Analysis

Day traders are not very concerned about the company’s long-term goals, achievements, plans, and potential. They focus on different criteria when looking for stocks. To the day traders, technical analysis is more important than anything else. They check the trading volume of the shares and the price actions to pick the best shares.

Research is a crucial element of long-term investment. Investors have to research the company’s financial position, goals, and other factors. They look for organizations that have high growth potential. Volatility might seem a good sign to the traders, but this might not work well for the investors. The stocks that come with high volatility are considered unstable.

Holding Period

People spend up to 15 hours per week on day trading or a maximum of 40 hours if they are active traders. As mentioned earlier, day trading is a short-term investment, in which the positions open and close within a few hours. The holding period for the stocks is quite high. It can be anywhere between 3 months and 5 years. The main disadvantage of long-term stocks is that you cannot withdraw your money before maturity. In other words, you will have to keep the position for a long time.

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