Restricted to liquidation only

Account is fully cash funded but I can’t buy ANYTHING!! This is getting ridiculous!!

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Typically an account restricted to ‘liquidate only’ stems from the account being flagged as Pattern Day Trader (PDT) and the account equity is below $25,000. Could this be the situation?

I started yesterday at $28K and dipped to $24,586 at 1225pm before running back up to $28K. My account showed $0.00 Buying Power for the rest of the afternoon. Even at $28K in the morning, I couldn’t buy anything. Very frustrating!

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id like to know if you have a business account or just personal

It’s just personal. Or should be. I’ve had it about a month.
Will I be good to buy Monday morning?

@ridedawg1 I may be able to check and see what’s up. What is the email used for the account? You can direct message me if you wish. Otherwise, support can always answer these types of questions by sending an email to support@alpaca.markets.

Thanks Dan! My email is ridedawg1@hotmail.com or
seanco1983@gmail.com

720-971-4782
Sean

Am I good to go for buying tomorrow morning? My account is at $27.4K but still shows $0.00 buying power.

@ridedawg1 The account.buying_power value, also called ‘effective buying power’, includes open orders. Any open ‘buy long’ or ‘sell short’ orders, which would increase positions, reduce the buying power. These orders could fill at any time and therefore, by reducing buying power, the funds required to cover those fills are effectively ‘reserved’.

In this specific case the account has open long positions in AMC and BBY.
The account has open sell orders for AMC, GME, BNGO, AMRS, PLUG, WPRT, AMRS, and EGY. The AMC sell order won’t reduce buying power however, all the other sell orders are ‘sell short’ orders and will reduce buying power. That is the reason why there is no buying power. There are existing orders to open new positions.

The fix is to cancel some or all of those open orders.

Hi Dan, I’m still having issues with my account.

  • I have 0 open orders
  • I have 2 closed orders since 2 Feb (today is day 7)
  • I have Cash: $8,776.86 but $0.00 Buying Power

I’m below the $25K PDT mark, but with only 2 closed orders in the past 7 days I would think I could buy.
Can you please tell me what’s going on?
Thanks!
Sean

Since the account had over 3 day trades in a rolling 5 day window it was flagged Pattern Day Trader (PDT). Accounts flagged PDT must maintain an equity above $25,000 to trade. If the equity drops below that value, one is restricted to liquidating positions and not opening any new positions. This is why the buying power is $0.

You can ask to have the PDT flag removed but this is generally a one time exception.

So the flag doesn’t expire? I thought once triggered, it would reset after a 5 day period has passed.
How do I go about requesting PDT flag removal? I’m still trying to figure out the rules.
Thank you!

The Pattern Day Trade flag is not really meant to be switched back and forth. An account is either PDT or not. However, one may request an exemption. Here is Alpaca’s standard response.

In general, once your account has been coded as a pattern day trader, the firm will continue to regard you as a pattern day trader even if you do not day trade for a five-day period. This is because the firm will have a “reasonable belief” that you are a pattern day trader based on your prior trading activities. However, we understand that you may change your trading strategy. If you do change your strategy you may request a one time exception to remove your pattern day trading flag. To do this send an email detailing the changes in your strategy and why you are no longer day trading. If approved Alpaca will remove the flag as a one time exception .
Please be advised if approved.

  • This is a one-time exception.
  • Should you bring your account balance back to $25,000, our (Alpaca’s) PDT protection will not block daytrading.
  • Should your account be flagged again as PDT and subsequently drops below $25,000 again, your account will be restricted and it will be very unlikely that this PDT flag will be removed again.

Please be advised that this process can take several days.

All US brokers are required to enforce these provisions by FINRA. There is some good information on their website here and here.

If you do not plan on having $25,000 equity at all times in an account you should probably not day trade. One gets 3 day trades every 5 days, however those are really meant to be used for ‘emergencies’ or the one-off times when one needs to exit a position. Once one goes over three, the consequences are basically a freeze on any trading until the account equity is brought above $25,000.

Thank you for the detailed explanation! I looked through the forum and couldn’t find this info.
Since it will take several days to resolve, I’ll go ahead and initiate a funds transfer to bring my balance over $25K.
I appreciate the quick response!

I have this same issue WHAT IS GOING ON!? I have over 25k in equity for a while so I don’t see why I would suddenly be flagged for day trading now and just get this “Restricted to liquidation only” message for some reason today. How do i get this fixed ASAP!?