DEFINITION of 'Piker'

A broker or investor who makes small size trades. Piker is a pejorative slang term used to describe individuals who are said to have limited impact on the operations of the market or a business.

An individual is most likely to be considered a piker if he or she makes small trades or does not prepare fully for the trading day. The word itself is considered more offensive than words such as “amateur”. In some cases an individual who considered him or herself to be very knowledgeable about investing, despite evidence indicating otherwise, would be considered a piker.

BREAKING DOWN 'Piker'

Professional brokers may consider investors who don’t work for a brokerage, such as day traders, to be amateur and of lower quality because they do not work for a professional firm. This may be fueled by the idea that day traders work from home in their pajamas, waking up right before the opening bell and not researching securities with the same attention to detail as professional brokers. Because of this charged approach to non-brokers by professional brokers, calling someone a piker is often limited to professional settings.

In some sense, the word piker is used to describe investors who act in ways considered outside of the ordinary compared to what is the generally accepted behavior by brokers. In addition to being compared to amateur investors, piker may be used to describe a professional broker who submits an odd unit of trading considering the setting.

For example, a broker may place an order for $5,000 worth of a security. Other brokers may consider this so small as to be laughable, and would instead prefer making much larger trades in order to prove their worth. Backlash against the use of the word centers on the stigma leveled on smaller trades and the investors who request that their brokers make them.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Business Broker

    A business broker is a company that assists in the purchase and ...
  2. Executing Broker

    An executing broker is a broker that processes a buy or sell ...
  3. Carrying Broker

    Carrying broker refers to a commodities or securities broking ...
  4. Outside Broker

    1. A real estate salesperson and deal facilitator who works for ...
  5. Negotiated Market

    A negotiated market is a type of secondary market exchange in ...
  6. Bond Broker

    A bond broker is a broker who executes over-the-counter bond ...
Related Articles
  1. Trading

    The Best Low-Cost, Web-Based Trading Brokers

    With this table, investors can differentiate between top low-cost, web-based trading brokers by price, capabilities, and offerings.
  2. Investing

    Brokerage Accounts, Explained

    Brokerages bring together customers or institutions and world financial markets. Here's everything to know about how they operate and what they do.
  3. Personal Finance

    Research Report Red Flags For Brokers

    Discover how to look past analysts' ratings to find winning stocks for your clients.
  4. Investing

    5 Misconceptions About Discount Brokers

    While discount brokers are the perfect choice for some investors, their business model could be detrimental to others.
  5. Trading

    How Forex Brokers Make Money

    Forex brokers set their prices based on commission, spread, or a combination of both. Traders have to be cautious in the thinly regulated forex market.
  6. Trading

    Price Shading In The Forex Markets

    This practice puts brokers ahead of their clients, but it doesn't have to be a negative for traders.
  7. Personal Finance

    New York City Apartment Hunting: A Broker Or Not?

    New York City is one of the most difficult-to-navigate real estate markets in the world. A broker can guide you and, surprisingly, even save you money.
  8. Investing

    How to Choose a Forex Broker: Everything You Need to Know

    Take your time when looking for a forex broker because a bad decision can be costly.
  9. Financial Advisor

    Investment Advisor Versus Broker: How They Compare

    What is the difference between an investment advisor and a broker?
RELATED FAQS
  1. Can a Broker Sell Your Stocks Without Permission?

    Find out if and when it's legal for a broker to sell securities from a customer's account and portfolio without their permission. Read Answer >>
  2. Why Are Securities Held 'In Street Name'?

    Buying or selling securities through a broker means they're held in your broker's name. Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Internal Rate of Return - IRR

    Internal Rate of Return (IRR) is a metric used in capital budgeting to estimate the profitability of potential investments.
  2. Limit Order

    An order placed with a brokerage to buy or sell a set number of shares at a specified price or better.
  3. Current Ratio

    The current ratio is a liquidity ratio that measures a company's ability to pay short-term and long-term obligations.
  4. Return on Investment (ROI)

    Return on Investment (ROI) is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or compare the efficiency ...
  5. Interest Coverage Ratio

    The interest coverage ratio is a debt ratio and profitability ratio used to determine how easily a company can pay interest ...
  6. Cash Conversion Cycle - CCC

    Cash conversion cycle (CCC) is a metric that expresses the length of time, in days, that it takes for a company to convert ...
Trading Center