Trading 24 Hours – Good Idea?
To answer the main question of this post, trading 24 hours a day is really never a good idea. The more you trade, the greater the risk. However, it is important that you understand when the markets are open in a 24-hour cycle. This requires an understanding of the 24-hour time format. Working with 24-hour time formats can be confusing. Nearly all trading platform use this format. Most people in the U.S. are accustomed to regular time, which observes counting to twelve twice a day. In comparison, a 24-hour clock starts at midnight and stops just before midnight the next day. If you have ever seen a time such as 22:54 and wanted to know how to convert it to regular time (10:54 p.m.), this post is for you.
- If the time you want to covert is before noon (i.e. in the morning), you probably don’t need to convert it. For example, 9:00 in 24-hour time is the same as 9:00 a.m. regular time. The slight difference here is 00:30, which is 12:30 a.m. Note that in 24-hour time, the clock “resets” to zero at midnight. In regular time, there is no “zero time”. Instead, the clock resets to 1 after 12:59 a.m.
- If the time you want to covert is in the afternoon, then you’ll need to do some math or memorization. When it’s 1:00 p.m. regular time, it’s 13:00 24-hour time. Similarly, 2:00 p.m. regular time is 14:00 24-hour time. See the pattern? We’re just counting up by one instead of resetting the clock to 1. One trick to calculate regular time is to subtract 12 from a 24-hour time. For example, 23:30 – 12 = 11:30, and we add p.m. because we know that any time after 12 on the 24-hour click is a p.m. time.
- Seconds and minutes are counted and expressed the same. If you see 20:30:01, the regular time is 8:30:01 p.m. (one second past 8:30 p.m.).
- What about time zone conversion? Yes, different time zones have different times. That means you can express time zones in both their regular times and 24-hour times. You should not have much trouble doing a conversion because you’re going to add or subtract the same amount of hours regardless of the time format. In other words, +8 hours will be the same mental process of addition, whether you’re using 24-hour time or regular time.
If you want to learn how to read 24-hour time quicker, or you for some reason want to start trading 24 hours, consider changing your smartphone’s time format or using a wristwatch that displays both formats.
See this conversion website to improve your understanding. Also, study this chart and the 24-hour clock: