DEFINITION of 'Head Trader'

The manager of a trading business. He or she is responsible for the positions, risk and ultimate profitability of that business. In a registered securities firm, the head trader supervises all traders and other personnel within his or her purview. Most notably, the head trader is charged with insuring regulatory and internal compliance for every employee who is part of the trading operation (i.e., not just traders).

BREAKING DOWN 'Head Trader'

Any head trader in a securities operation with supervisory and/or approval responsibilities must be a registered principal, meaning they must hold all the basic securities licenses and possess one of the following: a series 4, 9, 10, 23, 24, 51 and/or 53 license. The exact principal exams required depend on the scope of the head trader's responsibilities. In smaller firms, there may only be one or two head traders, but in large firms there are frequently many head traders, each in charge of a specific market. The head trader for municipal securities, for example, would have, at a minimum, a series 53 license. Different licenses apply for futures and commodities trading operations. A registered options principal, for example, will hold a series 4 license.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Registered Principal

    A licensed securities dealer who is also empowered to oversee ...
  2. Series 4

    A securities license entitling the holder to supervise options ...
  3. Series 7

    A general securities registered representative license administered ...
  4. Series 14

    An exam administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ...
  5. Compliance Registered Options Principal ...

    A supervisory and compliance position that FINRA required of ...
  6. Series 53

    An exam offered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ...
Related Articles
  1. Financial Advisor

    Breaking Down Financial Securities Licenses

    Find out which exam you need to begin your career as an investment professional.
  2. Personal Finance

    A Day in the Life of a Day Trader

    Day trading has many advantages and, while we often hear about these perks, it's important to realize that day trading is hard work.
  3. Investing

    Fixed Income Trader: Career Path & Qualifications

    Discover the career path the most fixed income traders follow and learn more about the qualifications needed and the average salary they earn.
  4. Financial Advisor

    Should You Add A Securities License To Your Qualifications?

    Clients love planners who sell securities, but a securities license takes a lot of work. Learn if the stress and study are worth it.
  5. Financial Advisor

    The Basics of Financial Securities Licenses

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) offers several licenses that correspond to specific businesses or investments.
  6. Personal Finance

    Get A Job In Compliance

    If you're a stickler for rules, this could be a promising career path for you.
  7. Trading

    Forex: Money Management Matters

    Currency trading offers far more flexibility than other markets, but long-term success requires discipline in money management.
  8. Trading

    What Type Of Forex Trader Are You?

    Timing may be the key to uncovering your true strength as a forex trader.
  9. Trading

    Are You a Trend Trader or a Swing Trader?

    Swing traders and trend traders execute market timing strategies that require different skill sets.
  10. Trading

    Broker Or Trader: Which Career Is Right For You?

    A day in the life of a broker or trader is an exciting and varied one. Find out how to decide between these two financial professions.
RELATED FAQS
  1. Do financial advisors need to pass the Series 7 exam?

    Learn about the various securities licensing exams, such as the Series 7 exam, and which licenses are required for financial ... Read Answer >>
  2. Do I need to take the Series 6 examination after I have already successfully completed ...

    No. According to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), (formerly the National Association of Securities Dealers), ... Read Answer >>
  3. What licenses does a hedge fund manager need to have?

    Obtain the pertinent information about the various types of licenses a hedge fund manager needs to have to legally operate ... Read Answer >>
  4. Do financial advisors have to be licensed?

    Understand why all financial advisors have to be licensed, and identify the specific licenses you must obtain to carry out ... Read Answer >>
  5. What is the difference between Series 9/10 and Series 24 qualification exams?

    Both Series 9/10 and 24 are the exams that must be completed by a principal before he or she can supervise certain sales ... Read Answer >>
  6. Q: Do I need to take the Series 6 examination after I have already successfully completed ...

    No. According to the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) you can convert your Series 7 license into a Series ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Federal Direct Loan Program

    A program that provides low-interest loans to postsecondary students and their parents. The William D. Ford Federal Direct ...
  2. Cash Flow

    The net amount of cash and cash-equivalents moving into and out of a business. Positive cash flow indicates that a company's ...
  3. PLUS Loan

    A low-cost student loan offered to parents of students currently enrolled in post-secondary education. With a PLUS Loan, ...
  4. Graduate Record Examination - GRE

    A standardized exam used to measure one's aptitude for abstract thinking in the areas of analytical writing, mathematics ...
  5. Graduate Management Admission Test - GMAT

    A standardized test intended to measure a test taker's aptitude in mathematics and the English language. The GMAT is most ...
  6. Magna Cum Laude

    An academic level of distinction used by educational institutions to signify an academic degree which was received "with ...
Trading Center