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An instruction from an investor to a broker to cancel a previously made order that has not yet been filled. Cancel orders are made when an investor changes his/her mind about making a transaction and decides to make a different one or none at all. It is important to issue a cancel order, especially when the replacement transaction involves the same security. Otherwise, the broker may fill both orders, perhaps resulting in a loss.
A customer order to a broker that cancels an earlier, unfilled order given by the customer.