1. Pre-market Orders:
NSE started the concept of pre-open session a few months back to minimize the volatility of securities during the market opening every day. Between 9:00 AM to 9:15 AM is when the pre-market session is conducted on NSE. During the pre-market session for the first 8 minutes (between 9:00 AM and 9:08 AM) orders are collected, modified or cancelled. You can place limit orders/market orders. After 9.08 AM to 9.15 AM no new orders can be placed, orders placed are matched and trades confirmed. So technically you can place orders only for the first 8 minutes and only on equity segment. More on Pre-market orders on this link.
2. Post-market Orders:
Similar to pre-market orders, post-market orders are allowed only for equity trading. The post-market session or closing session is open from 3:40 PM to 4:00 PM. During this session, people can place buy/sell orders in equity (delivery segment using the CNC product code) at the market price, but do note that even if you place a market order it will be placed on the exchange at the closing price. So for example, if the closing price of Reliance at 3:30 PM is Rs. 800, between 3:40 PM and 4:00 PM, you can place market orders to buy/sell Reliance at market price (will be taken at Rs. 800). Post-market session is not very active and you can look at the movement of stocks by opening the marketwatch window from 3:40 PM to 4:00 PM.
3. After-market Orders (AMO):
This facility is available on Zerodha for people who can’t actively track the markets from 9:15 AM to 3:30 PM. You can place orders any time from 4:00 PM to 8:59 AM (until just before the pre-opening session) for the equity segment and up to 9:10 AM for F&O. So you could plan your trades and place your orders before the market opens. After-market orders can be placed on all the exchange segments. Please note that if you place any after-market order between 9:15 AM and 4:00 PM, they could all be cancelled by 4:00 PM. AMO is allowed only between 4:00 PM and 9:00 AM for equity and up to 9:10 AM for F&O. For currency derivatives, AMO is allowed from 4:00 PM the previous day to 8:59 AM only.
After-market orders are also allowed for commodity trading. After-market orders for commodity can be placed anytime during the day, orders will be sent to the exchange at 10:00 AM (MCX opening). So if you place an after market order at 9:59 it will get sent today and if you place it at 10:01 it’ll get sent tomorrow.
To place an AMO, click on the Buy(B) or Sell(S) for the scrip, click on “More options” at the bottom of the order window and select “AMO”. You can look at the image below to understand better:
If you are looking at getting the best fill first thing in the morning, placing a market order at opening is a much better idea than using AMO. We typically have thousands of orders as AMO, which are sent together to the exchange at market opening and this might take a few seconds for the orders to be placed. AMO is a feature mainly for the investing community, who can’t get online during market hours.