When checking your Fidelity account balances, you may come across some “cash” terms you need to familiarize yourself with. They can provide useful insights such as how much money you have invested or how much cash is still available to trade.
Under the Balances tab in your Fidelity investment account, you’re going to see the following terms.
This thread will give you an overview of what they are.
The meaning of “Total Account Value” is relatively straightforward. It shows the total amount of money you have (both in cash and investment) minus outstanding debit balances or any amount needed to cover in-the-money short positions.
Cash Available to Trade refers to the total amount you can use to buy securities (stocks, options, ETFs, etc.) without depositing more money into the account. The value update in real-time as you execute your trades. The balance will go up as your sell order gets filled and down as your buy order gets executed.
This one is important, especially for day traders. Settled cash in Fidelity represents the amount of money (Cash Core – Cash credit) you can use to buy and sell without causing a Good Faith Violation.
The amount of money you can withdraw from your Fidelity investment account. This can be used to fund another brokerage account or transfer back to your own bank account.
Under the same section, you can also find miscellaneous terms such as:
- Held in cash
- Held in options
- Options in the money
- Cash Covered Put Reserve
- Cash Spread Reserve
If you want to learn more about the meaning of each term, you can click on Balance Definitions. A popup window will appear with additional information.