What is a 'Retail Investor'

A retail investor is an individual investors who buy and sell securities for their personal account, and not for another company or organization.

Also known as an "individual investor" or "small investor".

BREAKING DOWN 'Retail Investor'

Retail investors buy in much smaller quantities than larger institutional investors.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Institutional Investor

    A non-bank person or organization that trades securities in large ...
  2. Blocked Period

    A period of time in which an investor’s securities are prevented ...
  3. Buy To Cover

    A buy order made on a stock or other listed security that closes ...
  4. Investors Service Bureau

    A public service run by the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) that ...
  5. Pooled Funds

    Funds from many individual investors that are aggregated for ...
  6. Margin Account

    A brokerage account in which the broker lends the customer cash ...
Related Articles
  1. Investing

    Pitfalls Of Copycat Investing

    While it may sound good in theory to attempt to mimic the investment style and profile of a successful institution, it is often much harder (if not impossible) to do so in practice.
  2. Trading

    The Roles Of Traders And Investors In The Marketplace

    Discover how these two groups work together to keep the market functioning properly.
  3. Small Business

    What Makes Investors Tick?

    Every style of investing is different, so where do you fit in?
  4. Investing

    The Pros And Cons Of Institutional Ownership

    These big players can both create and destroy value for shareholders.
  5. Investing

    Why Average Investors Can't Make Money (XOP)

    Average Investors are dramatically underperforming the market. Here's a look at how they can fix those mistakes and make a decent return
  6. Investing

    4 Advantages of ETFs in the Stock Market

    ETFs offer some features that individual stocks do not, making them an attractive option for individuals who want to invest in the stock market.
  7. Investing

    Comparing Primary And Secondary Capital Markets

    In the primary capital market, investors buy directly from the issuing company. In the secondary market, investors trade securities among themselves.
  8. Investing

    Consumer Spending As A Market Indicator

    What people buy and where they shop can provide valuable information about the economy.
  9. Investing

    How to Avoid Stocks Full of Tourist Investors

    Tourist investors are short-term thinkers who invest in droves. Here are some steps to help you avoid tourist stocks.
RELATED FAQS
  1. Can retail investors buy commercial paper?

    Find out whether retail investors buy commercial paper, and learn about the restrictions that often prevent individual investors ... Read Answer >>
  2. How attractive is the retail sector for a growth investor?

    Learn how retail's volatile nature makes it attractive to growth investors, and discover the strategies these investors employ ... Read Answer >>
  3. How do investors lose money when the stock market crashes?

    Over the last hundred years, there have been several large stock market crashes that have plagued the American financial ... Read Answer >>
  4. If I believe retail sector companies are overvalued how can I profit from a fall ...

    Examine the various trading strategies that can be employed by an investor who anticipates a decline in stock prices in the ... Read Answer >>
  5. Is there a limit to how many stocks and/or bonds an interested investor can buy? ...

    Assuming the question primarily relates to the issuers of stocks and bonds, the simple answer is no. There are no regulatory ... Read Answer >>
  6. What's the difference between primary and secondary capital markets?

    Learn how in the primary capital market, securities are issued for the first time, while in the secondary market, investors ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Smart Home

    A convenient home setup where appliances and devices can be automatically controlled remotely from anywhere in the world ...
  2. Efficient Frontier

    A set of optimal portfolios that offers the highest expected return for a defined level of risk or the lowest risk for a ...
  3. Basis Point (BPS)

    A unit that is equal to 1/100th of 1%, and is used to denote the change in a financial instrument. The basis point is commonly ...
  4. Initial Public Offering - IPO

    The first sale of stock by a private company to the public. IPOs are often issued by smaller, younger companies seeking the ...
  5. Border Adjustment Tax

    A tax levied on goods based on where they are sold – exported goods are exempt from tax; those imported and sold in the ...
  6. Profit and Loss Statement (P&L)

    A financial statement that summarizes the revenues, costs and expenses incurred during a specified period of time, usually ...
Trading Center