# New to stock market, need some help understanding 'Stock Last Price v Ask Price'?

I entered Investopedia's Simulator game and was looking to buy some shares of Netflix. This is the data at the time:

Last Price 574.60

When I placed my market buy order of 100 shares, I paid 574.60 per share and not 574.76 Shouldn't I be paying the Ask Price instead of the Last Price? I know that the market is closed today (Saturday) and doesn't open until Monday but still, shouldn't I be charged the Ask Price?

I know that the Last Price refers to the price of the last trade and that the ask price is the minimum price someone is willing to sell their shares for, so I can't understand why I was charged 574.60 when I should have been charged 574.76.

Your assumptions are correct, but please understand you're playing a game using a simulator. A simulator is not able to actually buy and sell in the market and will need to make assumptions. The fact that you are able to buy when the market is closed is strange already.

The website itself does not give any details on the buy/sell prices it uses for transactions. Maybe you should send them an email to ask for a clarification.

The ask price is the price at which someone the market will buy from you if you are selling, the bid price is the price at which someone will sell to you. The latter will always be the higher price due to arbitrage considerations. Last price seems to be being used as bid price here but in many situations last price would be given as the arithmetic mean of the two. In the non simulated world the price you will pay or receive when trading out of hours will depend on the opening auction on the next trading day.

• I do believe the ask and bid have been mixed up in your comment. From Investopedia: Bid price is the amount of money a buyer is willing to pay for a security. It is contrasted with the sell [or ask] price, which is the amount a seller is willing to sell a security for. The difference between these two prices is referred to as the spread and is a source of profits for traders. – Gabi Jan 4 at 13:07