First, what is a day trade? A trade becomes a “day trade” when a security position is opened and closed on the same day (including pre and post market). Day trading includes buying and then selling as well as selling short and then buying to close.


If you hold a security overnight, close it the next day, and then open a new position in the same security that same day, that is not considered a day trade unless you close the opened position that day. However, holding a position overnight, adding more to your position the next day, and then closing the position that same day is considered a day trade (even if you only close the portion held overnight).


How are day trades counted?

Day trades are counted by counting the number of times there is a “change in direction” after an opening order. A change in direction means entering a sell to close order after a buy to open order OR entering a buy to close order after a sell to open order. A spread must open and close as a spread to count as one day trade. Otherwise, each leg count as a day trade.


The tastyworks desktop platform does keep a running count of day trades. You can find your day trade counter within the account drop-down menu of the platform. The counter can be found immediately to the left of your portfolio’s beta-weighted delta metric.


*Please Note: If you have requested a pattern day trader reset due to day trading then the counter does not reset. You must track of your day trades if you decide to continue day trading. The Day Trade Counter resets on a rolling five-trading day period from your last day trade.


To learn more about day trading rules, then please click here.


Detailed view:


You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to find out where you performed a day trade. You can head over to the Activity tab within the desktop platform to count your day trades. The key is to look for a single underlying that has an order to OPEN and CLOSE the same day. The screenshot below illustrates a simple case on how to do this.


Day trade counting examples

Example 1

Order 1: Buy 100 ABC
Order 2: Sell 60 ABC
Order 3: Sell 40 ABC

This is 1 day trade because there was only 1 “change in direction”.

Example 2

Order 1: Buy 60 ABC
Order 2: Buy 40 ABC
Order 3: Sell 100 ABC

This is 1 day trade because there was only 1 “change in direction”.

Example 3

Order 1: Buy 60 ABC
Order 2: Buy 70 ABC
Order 3: Sell 70 ABC

This is 1 day trade because there was only 1 “change in direction”.

Example 4

Order 1: Buy 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call, Sell 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 2: Sell 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call, Buy 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call

This is 1 day trade because there was only 1 “change in direction” and the spread was opened and closed as a spread.

Example 5

Order 1: Buy 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call, Sell 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 2: Buy 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 3: Sell 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call

This is 2 day trades because there was only 1 “change in direction” but the spread was not closed as a spread.

Example 6

Order 1: Buy 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call, Sell 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 2: Buy 1 ABC Jan18 100 Call, Sell 1 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 3: Buy 2 ABC Jan18 105 Call
Order 4: Sell 2 ABC Jan18 100 Call

This is 2 day trades because there was only 1 “change in direction” but the spread was not closed as a spread.