Open Order

What is an 'Open Order'

An open order is an order to buy or sell a security that remains in effect until it is either canceled by the customer, until it is executed or until it expires. Open orders commonly occur when investors place restrictions on their buy and sell transactions. A lack of liquidity in the market or for a particular security can also cause an order to remain open.


Market orders, which cannot have restrictions, are typically filled instantaneously, but if they remain open at the end of the day, the brokerage may cancel them. With limit orders, investors typically have to wait for the price that they set as their limit to be reached before the order can be executed. These orders will remain open either for the duration determined by the customer or until they are filled. If they remain open after several months, they may expire under the terms established by the brokerage through which the order is placed.