Being new to FOREX trading? Don’t worry, getting started in FOREX trading is easy and you can always test your skills first in a demo account before you go ‘live’ with real money. To get started in FOREX trading, we have to get to know what FOREX is. For the inexperienced, FOREX trading involves buying and selling the different currencies of the world. A FOREX deal is made when one buys one currency and sells another at the same time. It is always traded in pairs, Euro/USD, CHF/USD, USD/JPY…you get ‘short’ in a currency every time to buy another and the profit is made when you buy-low and sell-high.
FOREX market is the largest trading market in the world. It yields an average turnover of $1.9 trillion daily and the figure is nearly 30 times larger than the total volume of equity trades in United States. FOREX trading is very unique as the trades are done between two counterparts via electronic network or telephone connections TriumphFX . There is no centralized location as stocks or futures markets and trades are done around the clock. Everyday FOREX trade begins when the financial centers in Sydney start their day, and moves around the globe to Tokyo, London, and then New York. Traders can always response to the market regardless of the local time.
Although FOREX trading involves such a big volume of trades nowadays, it is not made available for the publics until year 1998. In the past, the FOREX market was not offered to small speculators or individual traders due to the large minimum business sizes and extremely strict financial requirements. At that time, only banks, big multi-national cooperation and major currency dealers were able to take advantage of the currency exchange market’s extraordinary liquidity and strong trending nature of world’s main currency exchange rates. Only until the late 90s, FOREX brokers are allowed to break huge sized inter-bank units into smaller units and offer these units to individual traders like you and me. Nowadays with the rapid growth of Internet and communications technology, FOREX trading has become one of the hottest make-money-at-home-businesses for those who wish to avoid conventional 9-5 day job.
As a fact in FOREX trading, FOREX is mainly traded in large international bank. According to Wall Street Journal Europe, 73% of the trade volume is covered by the major ten. Deutsche Bank, topping the table, had covered 17% of the total currency trades; followed by UBS in the second and Citi Group in third; taking 12.5% and 7.5% of the market. Other large financial cooperation in the list is HSBC, Barclays, Merril Lynch, J. P. Morgan Chase, Coldman Sachs, ABN Amro, and Morgan Stanley. For market participants segment, approximately half of the transactions done were strictly between dealers (i.e. Bank, or large currency dealer); others are mainly between dealer and non-financial institutions.
To start trading on FOREX, one must first learn how to read FOREX quotes. Foreign exchange quotes are always listed in pairs (e.g. USD/JPY 109.2): the first listed currency is known as the base currency with a constant value of 1 unit; while the currency listed in the second is known as counter. In our given example, USD/JPY 109.2 means a dollar of United States Dollar is equal to 109.2 Japanese Yen. In other words, the quote shows the relative value of one currency compare to the other. It means the value USD had been increased when USD/JPY quote goes up
However, a two-sided quote (e.g. EUR/USD 1.2435/1.2440) consisting of a ‘bid’ and ‘ask’ is often seen. The ‘bid’ price is the price at which you can sell the base currency; while the ‘ask’ price is where you can buy the base currency. The different of ‘bid & ask’ price is commonly known as ‘spread’. In the example of EUR/USD 1.2435/1.2440, this means you can buy 1 Euro Dollar with 1.2440 USD or sell 1 Euro 1.2435. Currency brokers make their profit through these differences of ‘bid & ask’ price and this is how they manage to provide their services to individual investors without charging them commission fees.