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Forex - Forex Trading 101 - A Basic Understanding

Sep 4, 2007
The Forex market has been available to individual traders for nearly ten years now. In the past, it was only available to large financial institutions, such as banks, big companies, multi-national corporations and top currency dealers. However, now that it's open to individual traders, it's become a hot topic that many new traders are eager to learn more about.

So what is it? Forex is short for foreign exchange. Forex trading is trading in the currencies of the world through the Forex market, which is the largest financial market in the world. In fact, it generates trillions of dollars of currency exchanges everyday.

In addition, it operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, making it the most liquid market in the world. Though trading starts in Sydney and ends in New York, Forex trading is not centralized in a single location. This means you can trade in Forex market whenever you wish, regardless of the local time. A big advantage for traders, especially for those in search of optimal liquidity.

Trading in Forex requires trades to done in pairs. When you purchase a currency, you sell another currency at the same time. The most commonly traded currency pairs in the Forex market are: USD/GBP, USD/JPY, USD/CHF, and GBP/USD. As you can see, each currency is represented by three letters. USD is the United States dollar. GBP is the British pound sterling. JPY is the Japanese yen. CHF is the Swiss franc.

The first three letters of a currency pair represent the currency you used for the investment, while the last three letters represent the currency in which you invested. For example, USD/GBP means you used United States dollars to purchase British pound sterlings.

To get started in the Forex market, you'll need a computer with a high speed internet connection, a funded Forex account, and a trading system. Most individual Forex traders will also use a broker, an individual or company that offers assistance to the trading process.

A broker earns his money off a small commission from your trades. In addition, although he'll be trading your funded account, all decisions will remain yours, assuming that's your wish. Here's what else a Forex broker can do for you:

- Offer you advice regarding real time quotes.
- Offer you advice on what to buy or sell based on news feeds.
- Trade your funded account basing solely on his or her decision if that's your wish.
- Provide you with software data to help you with your trading decisions.

Many experts say that you'll never really understand how Forex works until you've traded in the market. To help you gain this experience without having to risk your money, you can set up a demo account at many of the Forex educational sites available on the Internet. You can also invest a modest amount for a Forex simulator, which allows you to explore a never-ending variety of market conditions and see the impact they've had on currencies in the past.

There's no question Forex offers the trader the opportunity to earn a boat load of money. However, as with any other form of trading, and particularly because this is such a liquid market, it does have its risk. No trader will make money on every trade, and even seasoned traders can get caught and face substantial loses if they aren't careful and wise.
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Discover everything you ever wanted to know about mastering Forex trading, including Forex strategies, how to find a broker, managed accounts and much more ... all at absolutely no charge ... Mastering Forex Trading.
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