What Are the different types of Stock Orders Asian traders use?

As the largest exchange of its kind in Asia, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEx) is home to a vast array of traders.

As reported by the South China Morning Post, about 80 per cent of the nearly 1.5 million traders are believed to be “locals”. Located right next door to mainland China, it’s no wonder that many of these traders choose to use the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect as an entry point into China’s bustling equity market.

Offshore Chinese investors have played a significant role in driving up foreign demand for A-shares since they were allowed full access to Chinese stocks last November. Since then, 25 billion yuan worth of trading quota was used, with 17 billion yuan coming from non-Chinese investors.


In addition to the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect, Chinese traders also have access to a wealth of institutionally priced IPOs from mainland China since the A-share market was reopened for foreign investment back in 2005. In 2004, IPOs were opened up to Hong Kong and international retail investors and other global institutional players via dual listings on the Main Board and Growth Enterprise Market (GEM).

There were eight new dual-listed IPO issues within May alone, with outstanding totals reaching approximately 3 billion yuan. The average first-day gain was 17.6 per cent, while yields averaged at 12.8 per cent.

Many believe that despite recent regulatory changes made by the Securities & Futures Commission (SFC), as the removal of commissions on IPO deals, IPOs will continue to benefit both Main Board and GEM companies. According to The Standard, IG’s investment strategist Bernard Aw said the “more access you have to more capital means good growth potential.”

Trading in Hong Kong remains year-round solid due to its well-established network of investors – but how do these Asian traders find out which shares are being traded? Before getting into that, let’s first look at the two primary types of stock orders used by Asian traders.

The two primary types of stock orders used in Asia

GTC Order / Good Til Canceled

Also known as an open order or continuous order, this is an order that stays active until either the price target is reached or the client cancels. Even though GTC orders may stay in the market for an extended period, they do not necessarily mean that the order is held when it fails to execute in the ordinary trading course. The exchange will cancel them if they are not executed within a specific predetermined time frame.

TIF Order / Time in Force

There are two types of TIF orders: Good Till Time (GTT), an order that expires at a certain point, and Day Only (DO), which is active only during regular trading hours. GTT orders hold their validity until the price target is hit or the client requests it be cancelled. On the other hand, DO orders can be cancelled anytime before or during regular trading hours.

Depending on which exchange the trader chooses to use, different types of orders may be available:

Bid only:

A type of TIF order restricts the trader from specifying a price at which to buy. The trader is willing to buy the stock only if the best bid in the order book matches or comes close enough to match their request (e.g., providing they want a limit order).


Requires that the price specified be equal to or less than the best offer for an unfilled limit order; otherwise, it is not permitted. Typical examples of where this order might be placed include buying support (lower price) and selling resistance (higher prices). Stop – Requires the price specified to be equal to or higher than the best bid for an unfilled stop order; otherwise, it is not permitted. Typical examples of where this order might be placed include buying support (lower price) and selling resistance (higher prices).

GTC/ Limit:

It combines both types by specifying a GTC order and requires that the price matches or comes close enough to match what they want.

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