Investor's wiki

Block Trade

Block Trade

What Is a Block Trade?

A block trade is a large, privately negotiated securities transaction. Block trades are organized away from public markets to diminish the effect on the security's price. They are generally carried out by hedge funds and institutional investors through investment banks and different go-betweens, however high-net-worth accredited investors may likewise be eligible to partake.

The New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq characterize a block trade as one including no less than 10,000 shares of stock, or one worth more than $200,000. Most block trades far surpass these essentials.

Understanding Block Trades

A mass estimated sell order put on a stock exchange might outsizedly affect the share price. Interestingly, while a block trade negotiated privately will frequently give a discount to the market price for the buyer, it won't illuminate other market participants about the unexpected supply until the transaction has been publicly recorded.

Block trades not yet publicly uncovered are viewed as material non-public data, and the financial business' self-regulatory organization, FINRA, precludes the disclosure of such data as front running.

Block trading facilities and block houses are specific middle people that can work with block trades. Block houses are divisions inside brokerages that operate dark pools, private exchanges where large buy and sell orders can be matched out of public view. Block houses can likewise break up large trades on public markets to disguise the scope of unexpected supply, for instance by putting various iceberg orders.

Block Trade Example

A hedge fund needs to sell 100,000 shares of a small-cap company close to the current market price of $10. This is 1,000,000 dollar transaction on a company that may just be worth a couple hundred million, so the sale would presumably push down the price essentially assuming entered as a single market order. Additionally, the size of the order means it would be executed at dynamically more awful prices in the wake of debilitating demand at the $10 asking price. So the hedge fund would see slippage on the order and the other market participants could heap on, shorting the stock in light of the price action and driving the price down further.

To keep away from this, the hedge fund can contact a block house for help. Block house staff members would break up the large trade into reasonable lumps. For instance, they could split the block trade into 50 proposals of 2,000 shares, each posted by an alternate broker to additional camouflage their starting point.

On the other hand, a broker could find a buyer able to buy every one of the 100,000 shares at a price organized outside the open market. This would normally be another institutional investor.


  • Block trades are generally broken up into smaller orders and executed through various brokers to cover the true size.
  • A block trade is a large, privately negotiated securities transaction.
  • Block trades can be made outside the open market through a private purchase agreement.