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Who is the Forex Market?

Aug 17, 2007
The forex market, "Spot FX market" or foreign exchange market is made up of two main groups.

The one is the interbank market which consists of banks and other institutions who trade with one another on a daily basis.

The total turnover is estimated at 1.5 trillion US dollars per day and the banks trade with each other in the millions and multimillions.

As for the other portion making up the forex market, we are talking about the retail investor. This is any person who trades with their own capital either through the technology of the internet or via some other way, such as by telephone with a broker.

Retail investors tend not to move markets because the trades they place are insignificant in size to those of the banks.

Until fairly recently, it was very difficult for the retail investor to trade with the banks, especially intraday and with similar spreads as those offered within bank trading floors.

However, with the advent of the internet and technology, brokerage firms have cropped up all over the place providing a middle-man who allows the retail investor to trade with very similar spreads to the banks themselves, in realtime.

The advantage of this to the trader is that the broker, because most trades occur only in his books in reality, requires only a "margin deposit" to allow the home-trader to be able to control vast sums of real currency and hence make big profits with small capital.

For example, if a broker offers 100:1 leverage, the investor need only give the security of $1000 (in other words have at least $1000 free capital to place on the trade as security) to the broker in order to control $100,000 - or 1 lot - of currency.

This allows for losses and would mean each 4th decimal place movement of the currency pair price (eg - GBP/USD = 1.7689 - 1/7690) which may occur within seconds of placing the trade will be worth $10.
It would only take a change of 20 points (ie 1.7689 - 1.7709) to make a profit of $200 in a long.

The price would have to move considerably for the trader to actually lose that $1000 although it is possible for the market to move more than 100 points. Risk management such as setting a "stop loss" of 20 points would ensure a maximum loss of 20 points could be set as protection from further losses in the case of unexpected market movement.

So, in order to trade, we must trade through the environment of the margin broker. This is advantageous to us, in that we need a lot less capital to control fairly vast amounts of currency easily, legally and with real high profit potential on a daily basis.

What is required is an understanding of fundamental analysis and a sound technical strategy in the author's opinion. The rest is abitrary. Most importantly, though, it must be said, trade only what you can afford to lose. Becoming a winner takes persistence and time in front of the charts.
About the Author
Sam Beatson is "THE Master Forex Trainer". He owns http://www.fasttrackforex.com the Forex training crash course. His mentoring program is via http://www.fasttrackforex.com/special
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