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24-Hour Time Basics for Day Trading Charts

If you’re going to be trading, you’ll probably encounter the 24-hour time format. Many folks in the U.S. are not familiar with reading 24-hour time. Instead, we frequently use regular time, which may seem even crazier. Regular time splits the day into two 12-hour sections. In each section, we count from 12:00 to 1:00, then from 1:00 to 12:00. To someone from outer space, regular time may seem more difficult than the 24-hour format. After all, in the 24-hour format, all you are doing is counting from 00:00 (midnight) to 24:00 (midnight again) for each hour of the day.

NinjaTrader uses 24-hour time for its charts. Currently, there is no way to get around that. Until you reach a point where 24-hour time is second-nature, you’ll have to learn how to do some mental math or memorization.

24-Hour Time Tips

  • There is no need to do any conversion, as 24-hour and regular times will be the same for times between 1 a.m. and noon, e.g. 1:00 on a 24-hour clock is 1:00 a.m. on a regular clock.
  • After 1 p.m. regular time, to get the regular time from a 24-hour time, subtract 12. For example, 19:30 – 12 = 7:30 p.m. regular time.
  • Confused if 00:00 and 24:00 are the same? You should be. Many 24-hour clocks consider this the same time (midnight).
  • Time zone conversion will still work the same way. Add or subtract the time difference as you normally would.

Want to learn how to read a 24-hour clock faster? Get a wristwatch that has both formats or change your smartphone’s time display. If you have more questions, check out this helpful website and the pictures below.

24-Hour Time Chart

24-Hour Time Clock

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