Sell stop order was not filled after halt

I am absolutely furious about this and hope to hear from an Alpaca employee as soon as possible. During the recent spike in ORPH which involved a series of halts, the price was currently set at 69.99, and so I set a stop sell order for 69. I assumed this would turn into a market sell order as soon as ORPH unhalted at a price below 69.99. However, that order was canceled by Alpaca, and I had to sell on the market during the next halt, which cost me a considerable amount of money.

I need an explanation for this and I need one quickly. Why did my stop sell not execute? To be clear this was a stop order, not a stop limit order. This should have been converted into a market order as soon as the unhalt happened, correct?


We have reviewed the trade in question and our findings are below. All times below reference June 10th 2021.

At 14:19:03 ET ORPH was in a trading halt.

AT 14:19:27 ET you entered an order to sell 1000 ORPH at a 69 stop.

At 14:29:03 ET the stock re-opened from a halt at 63.00. This print elected your stop order.

The stock was open for 15 seconds before being halted again and at 14:19:18 the stock was halted.

At 14:29:24 the order was cancelled. I understand that you are saying you did not submit this cancellation request and we are investigating that at the time.

However, a market order was placed and at 14:29:56 and you sold the stock on the next halt re-opening at 15:24:19 at 23.00 a share.

You can search and view halt times on this link. Trading Halt Search

The question here is … Why did the 69 stop order not execute once it was elected at 14:29:03. The answer to that is that market orders to sell have priority over any other order (including elected stop orders). Your stop order could not officially be elected until the stock traded at or below 69.00. That left less than 15 seconds for the order to be filled in a fast moving market where other orders will have the priority over your order.

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