A day trader can defined as a person who trades for an occupation, or as a trader that opens and closes positions in a single day. Strictly speaking a day trader will always only do daily trades, and will never hold a position beyond the daily market close. In practice, some day traders hold positions longer than a single day.

Other types of traders include:

  • Scalper: A scalping trader will make very fast trades, only holding positions for minutes, or even seconds.
  • Swing Trader: A swing trader day trades, but may hold positions for a few days.
  • Position Trader: A position trader will hold positions for weeks to months.
  • Investor: An investor takes a vested interest in a company, and invests for the long term of several months to years.