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What Are Auto Square-off Timings For Open Intraday Positions

26 Jul 2023


The Indian intraday trading scene is a whirlwind of adrenaline and excitement, where traders engage in lightning-fast transactions to seize profit opportunities. But amidst the frenzy, auto square-off timings can make or break a trader's day. These timings dictate when brokers automatically close open intraday positions, ensuring traders start each day afresh. 

From the dawn of the trading day to the thrilling final hour, we delve into the intricacies of early morning square-offs, mid-day checkpoints, and the last-minute race against the closing bell.

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What Exactly are Auto Square-off Timings?

In simple terms, auto square-off is a process by which brokers automatically close open intraday positions before the market closes for the day. This ensures that traders do not advance their positions to the next trading day, as intraday trading involves settling all trades on the same day. 

In India, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has set specific rules regarding auto square-off to ensure the smooth functioning of the market and protect traders' interests.

Early Morning Auto Square-Off

The first auto square-off happens 15–30 minutes after the market begins. This scheduling guarantees that traders start the day without any positions from the previous day. To avoid sudden closures, traders must plan and close their holdings before this time.

Mid-Day Auto Square-Off

Mid-day auto square-offs occur between 12:30 and 1:30 PM. This time allows traders to close their positions and rethink their daily trading plans. To prevent automated closures, traders must know this timing and close or square off their positions before this deadline.

Last Hours Auto Square-Off

Indian intraday trading also depends on the last-hour auto square-off schedule, that is, between 3:00 and 3:30 PM. As brokers automatically square off intraday holdings, traders must pay attention to this moment. Prevent avoidable closures by planning transactions and managing positions.

What are the Benefits of Auto Square-Off?

Indian intraday traders benefit from auto square-off. These benefits can help traders improve their trading strategies and experience. Benefits of auto square-off include:

  • Adherence to rules and regulations: Auto square-off assures traders follow Indian intraday trading guidelines. As SEBI requires, traders liquidate positions before the market closes to avoid a position carryover.
  • Risk Mitigation: Auto square-off decreases overnight market risk. Traders reduce risk by closing holdings during the trading day. This shields dealers from overnight price swings.
  • Market Stability: Brokers need automatic square-off for market stability. Brokers reduce interruptions and imbalances by requiring intraday position closure.
  • Compliance with Regulatory Requirements: The SEBI-complaint brokers use auto square-off. This helps maintain market integrity by automatically closing intraday positions.
  • Efficient Trading Environment: Trades are settled faster using auto square-off. Traders may focus on fresh trades without worrying about overnight positions, allowing them to act quickly and exploit intraday chances.

How to Manage the Risk with Auto Square-off?

Managing the risk associated with auto square-off is essential for intraday traders in Indian markets. Here are some key considerations for managing risk with auto square-off:

  • Setting Stop-loss orders: Stop-loss orders can reduce losses in market downturns. Stop-loss orders close bets at a specified price thereby reducing risk.
  • Monitoring Market Volatility: Market volatility increases auto square-off risk for intraday traders. Market circumstances and news events help traders make judgments and alter strategies.
  • Diversification of Positions: Diversifying across industries or instruments reduces the impact of any particular deal. This method reduces risk and protects against market fluctuations.
  • Risk-to-Reward Ratio: Before trading, traders should evaluate the risk-to-reward ratio. Traders can assess possible returns and losses to ensure the risk is worth it.
  • Monitoring Trade Execution: Avoid auto square-off by executing trades quickly and accurately. Traders should regularly watch trade execution to ensure positions are entered and closed correctly.


Indian intraday traders must understand and follow auto square-off timings. By adhering to auto square-off, traders can effectively manage their positions and mitigate risks. 

Studies have shown that market stability has improved with the implementation of auto square-off, leading to smoother trading operations. This data underscores the importance of these timings in promoting fair and transparent trading practices while optimising the trading potential for Indian intraday traders.


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