Working as stock market employee

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Answered by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Adam al-Kawthari

I am working as a software developer in lahore stock market. Now stock market facilitates some interest based transactions (carryover transactions) to its brokers. Moreover different banks & insurance companies are also trading in stock market as listed companies. Hence the applications we develop include interest based calculations & also the salary we earn from stock market may come from those interest based transactions or from banks or insurance companies etc.
Please guide in detail whether or not my job is halal?

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

 As explained in many previous answers that when taking up employment, one needs to consider two things:

 1) The nature of the job one is undertaking, and

 2) The source of the income received on that job.

In order for a job and the ensuing salary to be considered Islamically lawful, both the actual job and the source of income have to be Halal.

In terms of your job as a software developer, if you develop appliances that can be used for interest-based calculations as well as non-interest based calculations, then merely developing such software for the stock market industry cannot be considered unlawful. However, if you design programmes that are exclusively used for interest-based calculations, then this is not permitted, since any work that entails direct involvement in interest-based transactions is unlawful and sinful, and the wages Haram.

You should also be wary of the fact that there are many other stock-market transactions that are unlawful such as futures, hedging, and the like, due to the fact that they violate more than one of the many well-established principles of Shariah. At times people become involved in gambling when trading in shares. As such, your software must not be exclusively designed to deal with such unlawful transactions.

 In terms of the salary, if it is directly paid to you by insurance companies or other financial institutions whose proceeds are wholly haram and filthy, then it is not permitted for you to take such salary, otherwise it is permitted.

 To summarize, in order for your job and wages to be considered Halal, you must not develop software that are exclusively used for unlawful and usurious transactions, and secondly, your wages must not be paid directly by companies who only possess unlawful and filthy money.

 And Allah knows best

 Muhammad ibn Adam al-Kawthari

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