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Forex | 100 Work from home jobs

How to Day Trade the Forex Market In 2 Hours or Less a Day (EURUSD)

Here’s how I day trade the forex market, specifically the EURUSD and/or GBPUSD (can use these tactics in other pairs too), in two hours or less. If you’re a day trader this is a must read. Master this and you’ll take your trading to a whole new level (regardless of what strategy you use). The day trading strategies below are covered in the Forex Strategies Guide for Day and Swing Trading eBook…although you have to combine what you learn in multiple chapters.

Below, I discuss the basic strategy I use to day trade forex. That’s well and good; you may opt to use it or not. What’s covered next though–trading beyond the hard right edge– is a bold concept and can turn mediocre trading results into phenomenal results (with practice). Knowing a strategy is great, but even a good strategy may only produce mediocre or poor results if you don’t adjust well to changing market conditions.

Many traders are seeking a strategy, but usually fail to take the time to learn how to implement it properly. We need both pieces–a strategy, and the know-how to implement it effectively.

Day Trading Forex – Basic Guidelines

Becuase this is already an extensive article, links are provided to other articles with more information on given topics.

Most (not all) of my day trades in the forex market are based on these simple concepts (assume an uptrend; same concepts apply to a downtrend):

  • Trade when London and/or the US markets (earlier is better than later) are open. I opt to trade from 8:30 to 10:30 AM EST (15:30 to 17:30 on my charts below). Really anytime while London is open is fine. Two hours a day, sometimes less, and that’s all.
  • Only trade in the direction of the trend.
  • Wait for a pullback. The pullback should be near a (roughly drawn) trendline and/or above a major prior swing low (for some guidance on differentiating small waves from major waves see Impulsive and Corrective Waves ).
  • On the pullback the price must stall–stop falling–for at least 2 bars+ (2 one-minute bars, or more). Buy a breakout above the high price of the sideways bars. This requires patience. If the price stalls and then breaks out in the opposite direction of our trade (no fill on our order), assess if you still want to trade in that direction, and wait for another slow down/stal.
  • Stop Losses and Targets are set at the start of each day (this video shows how ) and may be slightly adjusted during the day based on expanding or contracting volatility. Measure the trending price moves between pullbacks, and then subtract several pips from the smaller ones..that is your target on each trade, and your stop loss is typically about half of that. For example, on April 15 I opted to use a target of 14 pips and a stop loss of 8 pips. On April 14 I opted to use a 10 pip stop loss and a 18 pip target. This changes over time. When I (originally) wrote Forex Day Trading with $1000 or Less. I discuss trading for 6 pips with a 3.5 pip stop loss. A 3.5 pip stop loss likely wouldn’t work in a more volatile environment (like on the chart examples below) and expecting to make 18 pips wasn’t probable when volatility was low. Things change, as traders we must adapt.
  • Exit all position at least two minutes before major news events (related to the pair being traded), and don’t trade until after the news is released. Cancel all pending orders before news and when you are away from your computer. Create a day trading routine to avoid mistakes.

Seems simple right? To day trade the forex market just buy pullbacks to trendlines (approximately), trade in the direction of the trend and make 14 pips or lose 8 pips. It’s not as easy as it sounds. Knowing the strategy isn’t enough. Yes, that is the strategy, but since we can draw trendlines almost anywhere, and if you zoom out (or in) all of a sudden the trend isn’t so clear, maybe following the strategy isn’t quite as easy as it seems…until you learn and practice this one thing.

Day Trade the Forex Market – Beyond the Hard Right Edge

If you want to really learn how to day trade the forex market (or any market), master “trading beyond the hard right edge.” Most people look at what has already happened on their chart, come up with one trade idea and then pray it works out. Since we can’t see what happens next (beyond the hard right edge of our chart), we think of scenarios we want to happen, or that we fear. Most people gravitate toward one or the other. They think about entering a trade and the price flying in their direction for an easy profit and high fives from friends (fantasy), or entering a trade and the price plummeting against them, stopping them out (nightmare). Either of these scenarios are possible (but so are a host of other possibilities) and which one is more prevalent in your mind will bias your trading.

If you are very optimistic, you may miss clues that the market is turning against you. If you are very pessimistic you may avoid a good trade, or jump out of it too Forex trading strategy early (see Mind over Market video for how biases affect trading). What is missing? Your strategy gets you into a trade, with an initial profit target and stop loss. Once you are in the trade though, it is a different world. All sorts of things could happen, very few of which have been considered. What if the price moves in your favor slightly and then starts to move against you? What if the price moves to within 0.1 pips of your target and then reverses, fast (or slow)? What if the price does absolutely nothing after you get in…for 10 minutes? As a day trader is this still the same trade your originally took? You were expecting something to happen, now that it hasn’t, what do you do?

As a day trader, things change very quickly. As Mike Tyson says “Everyone has a plan till they get punched in the mouth.” Unfortunately most day traders don’t even have a plan, and they just let themselves get punched in the mouth. Letting the price hit your stop loss or target is fine. I have designed the strategies I publish to be profitable (you still need to practice when to implement the strategy, deciding which trades to take and which to avoid) with this “hands off” approach. That is never (or rarely) how I actually trade through. Active trade management, when properly applied, is far more profitable and far more consistent than the hands off approach. There is one downside: you need to constantly monitor the market while trading (which is fine for day trading). For a more thorough comparison of the differences between active management and hands-off trading, see Leave Day Trades Alone, Or Manage Them Actively .

How to Day Trade the Forex Market – Active Trade Management

Let’s talk about “trading beyond the hard right edge.” This is an advanced form of active trade management. It is a mind frame, where you look at what has happened and come up with scenarios for exactly what you will do (exit, adjust stop or target, or change nothing) in various scenarios after you enter a trade. This may seem impossible, but there are always only a few things you can do, and few things which could happen, so it actually isn’t that difficult (if you practice).

  • If the trend is strong and the market isn’t giving any warnings signs, I will usually let the price do whatever it wants. My target is likely to get hit, so I leave my stop loss where it is and if I get stopped out I get stopped out. It was worth the risk because everything is moving well.
  • If the trend is very strong, I also decide before the trade if I am allowed to adjust my target or not. If I am allowed to increase my gain, where am I going to move the target to? This will be based on the length of prior price swings (we play odds/tendencies, not what we hope will happen). If I adjust my target, and then price pulls back from it, do I get out or let it make another attempt at the new target? Decide what you will do before the trade is even placed.
    • Usually, I don’t adjust targets. Maybe 1 in 10 trades is worth adjusting the target for. Remember, the target is based on the lengths of prior swings seen that day, so unless there is very good reason that this particular move is likely to be much bigger than the others (a unicorn of sorts) there isn’t usually sufficient reason to adjust a target. If a target is approached, and just barely missed, I usually close the trade immediately. Never let a trade that almost hit your target turn into a loss. This is why you need to plan ahead; if you don’t, it will be very hard to hit that “close” button when profit is evaporating and you are experiencing regret/anger/fear/hope.
  • Say the trend is up, and we just a had a very deep pullback, retracing all or most of the prior up wave. The trend is still technically up, but the deep pullback could be the first wave lower of a downtrend (if the price proceeds to create a lower high after). So thinking ahead, I say to myself “The trend is still up, so I want to get long using my usual entry method, but I also know that selling pressure is present. Therefore I will buy to capture any remaining upside momentum, but if the price shows any weakness once I am in the trade I will exit immediately.”
    • Various situations call for different exits. For example, if things look pretty good, but not ideal, I will allow the price to make three attempts to move in my direction. If it moves in my direction three times but doesn’t hit my target, I look to exit.
    • I may also opt to give it only two chances to go in my favor if the setup is lightly less favorable (trend not as strong). Exit after two attempts if it doesn’t hit the target.
    • If the trend is likely over but you are squeezing the last bit of juice out, or if the trade is at an inflection point which could go either way, only give it one attempt. If it moves in your direction and then falters, bail immediately. It is probably a false breakout .
  • If you take a trade and it immediately moves against you, there isn’t usually much you can do about that. You get stopped out. When we take a trade we need to let it make at least one attempt (or more) in our direction before bailing on it. If you find this happens to you often, you need to work on entries because something is wrong.

To day trade the forex market successfully you need to read and adjust to market conditions (Velocity and Magnitude will help in this). You decide which direction you are going to trade, and before the trade you decide how to manage that trade. Where you entered is no longer relevant; you can’t do anything about your entry price once in a trade. Forget about it. You adapt to what happens after you are in the trade. Like Napoleon on the battle field, you have calculated everything beforehand.

How to Day Trade the Forex Market – Trade Examples

Here is the April 14 EURUSD 1-minute chart, along with comments below. I traded for about an hour and a half.

Forex trading strategy

How to day trade the forex market – EURUSD 1 minute (click to enlarge)

This day (two hour period) was dominated by news at 830 AM EST (1530 on chart). The brown boxes mark “slow downs” in the price which is what we are watching for. I used a 10 pip stop loss and 18 pip profit target on this particular day.

  • The first trade was the first slow down after a very strong move higher. This is one where you just look at the upside momentum and decide you need to get in, on a pullback, as soon as the price starts moving higher again. The long trade occurs as the price crosses above high of the sideways movement (high of the brown box). +18 pips.
  • Trade 2. The price is still rallying, and then has a pullback (just before trade) and then pops higher again. When it pulls back again, it pauses at almost the same low, showing very little selling momentum. This one you want to give a chance to hit the target. +18 pips.
  • Trade 3 and 4. Trend was up. Kept buying. Stopped out on both. Trade 3 never really moved my direction. Trade 4 did move in my direction but then reversed. Cut the losses early. -9 pips and -5.3 pips.
  • Trade 5. We now have a little downtrend, but we can see the price is still respecting the 1.0655 area (horizontal line). Given the overall moves higher, going short isn’t even a consideration yet. Buy again when the price stalls at support and then moves higher. The price just about reached the target and then pulled away from it. Closed immediately. +14.9 pips.
  • Trade 6. Didn’t actually take this one. But it was similar to trade 5…but with the added benefit that just before this trade the price made a short-term higher high (at 16:58 relative to the minor high at 16:42). That would have been another profitable one.

In less than two hours of trading we had 5 trades: 3 winners and 2 losers, for a total of 36.6 pips. Assume you have a $2000 account and risk 1% (can lose up to $20 on each trade). With a 10 pip stop loss you can trade 2 mini lots to stay within this risk tolerance. Therefore, your daily profit is 36.6 pips x $1 (how much a mini lot is worth per pip) x 2 (how many mini lots you are trading) = $73.2, or 3.66%. With a $10,000 account you make $366 for two hours work. Once consistent, you can increase risk to 1.5% or 2% per trade(no need to go higher than that), pushing your revenue to $732 on a $10,000 account. That’s based on one strategy…the forex strategies guide has many more.

Here is the April 15 EURUSD 1-minute chart (I learned a new trick in MT4–if you drag an order from your account history onto the chart it will put the trade levels for that trade on your chart).

Forex trading strategy

How to day trade the forex market – EURUSD (click to enlarge)

On April 14 we had lots of “clean movement”. On April 15 we had a Euro conference begin right around the time I started trading (1530 on chart) and that created some price whipsaws. Best to avoid…but as we can see I did take one trade in there…

  • Based on swings prior to the first trade I opted for a 14 pip target and 8 pip stop loss.
  • We can see the price moving mostly sideways but in a very jagged way. Just before the first trade the price tried to move lower, but failed. It rallied paused, and I bought when the price broke above the brown box (I manually draw these…for you…I don’t’ draw them while I am actually trading). This trade was almost 10 pips onside, and then I took a full loss on it. I make mistakes too. Given the choppy nature we were seeing, I shoudl have bailed much earlier. The reversal was very fast, so maybe it is a flat trade, but at worst should have only been only a -5 or -6 pip loss. This is a slightly different strategy than the one discussed above–I wanted in because the price had just had a false breakout. and not necessarily because of the overall trend (like all other trades).
  • Trade 2. Sharp move in our direction, little pullback to near old resistance (range top), pause, enter as price starts moving higher. Classic! +14 pips.
  • Trade 3. Pretty much the same. The price is now moving a little sideways, but the price held above the prior swing low, and all the elements are there so I am triggered in. +13.6 pips (entry price had slippage slightly reducing profit on trade–target stays at originally planned level despite the slippage).
  • x: I marked a box and put an x under it. This slow down/stall is way too close to a recent high. This trend has been running up and a deeper pullback is likely.
  • NFs: tried to get long twice, but to no avail. Price kept dropping. This why we wait for the price to move back in our direction. It never broke above the brown box, so no trade. By the second NF you can see my comments…I am basically saying I will only give this trade one chance to go (if it fills, which it didn’t) because by this time the price had retraced the whole last leg of the rally, indicating weakness.
  • The price then lulls a little and it is almost 10:30 AM EST (1730 on chart) so that was it for the day.

Overall, in less than an hour of trading we had 3 trades: 2 winners and 1 losers, for a total of 19.6 pips (a bit higher if I don’t make that mistake on the first). Assume you have a $2000 account and risk 1% ($20 on each trade). With an 8 pip stop loss you can trade 2.5 mini lots. Therefore, your daily profit is 19.6 pips x $1 (how much a mini lot is worth per pip) x 2.5 (how many mini lots you are trading) = $49, or 2.45%. With a $10,000 account you make $245 for an hour of work….you don’t even need to give up your day job. Once consistent, you can increase risk to 1.5% or 2%, pushing your revenue up to about $490 on a $10,000 account (for this particular day).

To learn more about how to day trade forex, including basics to get you started (order types, currency pairs to focus on, defining trends…), 20+ strategies and a plan to get you practicing and successful, check out the Forex Strategies Guide for Day and Swing Traders 2.0 by me, Cory Mitchell, CMT.

Additional Notes on Day Trading the Forex Market

I recommend using a daily stop loss and a loss from top. If you lose 3% (three trades risking 1%), stop trading. Read Day Traders: How and Why to Use a Daily Stop Loss for more details. Once you master this method, this should be a rare event. We call it “blowing up” (when you lose three trades right off the bat and have to stop trading). You should only blow up once ever month or two.

On days were volatility is lower, your stop loss and target will be a bit smaller. But by continuing to risk 1% (or 1.5% or 2%), your position size will increase. If you’re well practiced you still should be able to make a good daily income, no matter if volatility contracts or expands. Be aware of super tiny stop losses though, and huge positions sizes…that can spell disaster (see Reducing the Risk of Catastrophic Trading Losses ).

For day trading forex, use an ECN account with near zero spreads. and pay the small commission if you plan on day trading forex regularly. When volatility shrinks the tight spread becomes more important. When it is quieter, the spread becomes much more of an obstacle, because if it is quieter our targets are going to be smaller. Our payoff relative to the spread decreases. On really quiet days, or days where you don’t see valid trade setups, you have to be content not to trade. Save your capital for better opportunities.

My order is poised in anticipation of a trade. Assume I want to buy. I set up a buy stop order (don’t confuse buy stop with a stop loss order–the stop loss order is attached to our buy stop order) with a 8 pip stop loss and 14 pip target (or whatever it is on that particular day). I then place it way above the current price (so it doesn’t accidentally get filled before I want it to). When a slow down forms, I drag the order–with stop loss and target attached–down to the entry price I want (just above brown boxes on charts). That way, my order will trigger as soon as the price moves out of the brown box. If you use market orders and are even a second delayed the price could be well away from the entry point we want (not good!). You can set this up using an MT4 plugin, discussed here. If you trade with a broker that supports NinjaTrader–a great trading platform–that will also work well (I think only FXCM offers NinjaTrader).

I learned this adaptive trading style from Nikolai, Manny and Marcello over at the Day Trading Academy …great Futures (S&P 500 E-minis) day traders. If you are interested in futures trading, or want to read a bit more on this topic, check out Developing and Trading the Best Day Trading Strategy .

Looking at the charts this may seem easy. It isn’t. It will take 6 months to a year of practicing two hours a day (including a few hours on weekends going through charts, reviewing, self-assessing and working on problem areas) before you will likely be able to trade like this consistently (see 5 Step Plan for Forex Trading Success ). What you are basically doing is planning your trades before the market even moves to your entry location. You have an idea of where you want your trades to take place before the market even approaches that area. If the market doesn’t go there, you don’t trade. If the market does something unexpected, you adapt and hatch a new plan. You are always thinking ahead, strategizing exactly how will get in and out of trades (based on all the price movement evidence for, or against, your trade)…before the trade is even placed. This is mentally taxing. which is one reason I only trade two hours a day (when I day trade). It is a skill and it takes a lot of work to develop…and maintain (if you don’t trade for a while, you’ll be “rusty”).

Don’t let a losing trade or two throw you off. Focus on what is happening, plan and then jump on opportunities. Keeping the mind busy with important trading tasks will keep your sabotaging emotions at bay.

Some days you may have 8 or 9 trades. Other days only one or two. Some days your stop loss will be 20 pips and your target 35…other days your stop will be 3.5 pips and your target 6. Adapt..and have fun! That s how to day trade the forex market, the EURUSD, or any forex pair.

To learn more about how to day trade forex, including basics to get you started (order types, currency pairs to focus on, defining trends…), 20+ strategies and a plan to get you practicing and successful, check out the Forex Strategies Guide for Day and Swing Traders 2.0 by me, Cory Mitchell, CMT.

I can’t cover everything in one article. Post your questions though, as that lets me know what to focus on in future articles.

Cory Mitchell, CMT says:

For day trading I stick to the EURUSD most of the time. I only ever day trade one pair at a time (one pair per day), and typically trade the same pair all week/month. I do occasionally switch to the GBPUSD because it has a bit more volatility, but the EURUSD is the standard.

Swing trading is different…for that I monitor loads of pairs because I can easily flip through the charts each night. Most won’t have trades each night, so it only takes about 20 minutes a night to flip through them all, spot trades, and place orders. I swing trade (when trades come up) combinations of the AUD,CAD,USD,EUR,GBP,JPY,NZD as well as the some of the smaller currencies…total of about 46 pairs.

But for day trading…just the EURUSD, and occasionally GBPUSD.

I have the following questions about the two trading examples in this article.
according to your ebook a trend has to be proven when trend trading. I.e. the price development shall show at least one higher high and one higher low in case of an uptrend.
However the first trade in the trading example of 14 april 2015) doesn’t meet this condition and with the second trade in the second trading example of 15 april 2015 this is questionable. I.e. the trades are made on the assumption that there is an uptrend and not on a proven uptrend.
Isn’t this in contradiction with the ebook ?
Kind regards,
At de Jong

Cory Mitchell, CMT says:

It’s not a contradiction, but the trades you point out could be considered a bit more advanced. The main reason for these trades comes from the Velocity and Magnitude chapter. For both the trades you mentioned we have huge velocity and magnitude to the upside. Those very strong moves shift the trend to up…because they create a significantly higher high (can no longer be a downtrend). As you point, we should be waiting for a higher low to confirm the trend. But that is exactly what I did. I waited for a pullback, and then I waited for the pullback to stall out. I then took a trade as the price started to rise again. By waiting for those small confirmations, I had both the higher high and higher low I was looking for.

But these are more advanced trades, because you can’t see the pattern of higher-high and higher-low before you take the trade. Instead, you only have a higher-high (very strong ones) and then in real-time need to be able to watch the pullback and tell yourself you will get in if it shows signs of making a higher-low (stalls out above where the big move higher began).

Usually I DO prefer trading in a well established trend. YET, when you have a massive move either up or down, that has very strong magnitude (velocity is a nice addition as well), that typically means the trend has reversed. Or it at least provides me with enough confirmation that I am willing to take a trade on the pullback that follows the big move (assuming it stalls out and then starts to move back in the direction of the big move).

Hopefully that helps clear it up. No chapter should be read in isolation. All the chapters have been included for a reason. There are elements from each that will help you make better trading decisions. Following a big move is one of those times. You may not have a typical trend structure, but the price action (a very strong move) tells us the trend has likely reversed, and by waiting for a pullback that stalls out before that big move began, we are in fact trading a trend…it is just the beginning of it.

Hi Cory
I’m a beginner and I have difficulty in understanding how you get to trading 2.5 mini lots in your example:
“Assume you have a $2000 account and risk 1% ($20 on each trade). With an 8 pip stop loss you can trade 2.5 mini lots.”

Trading 2.5 mini lots is surely going to require much more than $20, even if you have a massive leverage. Can you explain the reasoning/calculations here please.
Otherwise I’m enjoying your articles immensely – thank you

Cory Mitchell, CMT says:

Hi JP. You do need more than $20. You need at least $2000 (ie. “a $2000 account” per above), plus leverage.

Buying 2.5 mini lots costs $25,000, so you need at least 15:1 leverage (giving you $30,000 in usable capital (your 2000 x 15 leverage)). BUT, you can still keep your risk to only $20, if you choose.

If you buy a mini lot, each pip the price (EURUSD) moves will make or lose you $1. If you buy 2.5 mini lots, you will make or lose $2.5 for each pip of movement. If you buy at 1.0320 and place a stop loss at 1.0312 (8 pips difference) you are risking 8 pips, and therefore you will only lose about $20 (2.5 mini lots x 8 pips).

There is a big difference between the transaction value (25,000 in this case, for 2.5 mini lots) and how much you put at risk ($20 in this case, with only risking 1% of the 2000 in the account). How much you put at risk is up to you, and is based on your position size and how far you place a stop loss from your entry price.

Make more sense?

Thanks Cory, your explanation really makes great sense.

One small matter though:
My math on the cost of a mini-lot without leverage (for USD counter currency pairs) brings me to $10000 and not $1000. This might seem elementary but obviously its critical to get it right
Can you explain how you got to the $2500 for a mini lot please? I must be missing something somewhere.

Cory Mitchell, CMT says:

I need to proof-read my comments more carefully. Sorry for the confusion. My fault. I missed a zero and it threw off all the numbers in my prior comment. I have revised my prior comment with the correct numbers. Leverage is required, as you point out.

I will need to look through the article to see if I linked to the Position Size article anywhere. If not, this article discusses Position Size in more detail:

Simple Non-Farm Payroll Forex Strategy (NFP)

This simple non-farm payroll forex strategy allows you capitalize on the most volatile moments in the forex market. On the first Friday (sometimes the second Friday) of each month at 8:30 AM EST the non-farm payroll (NFP) data is released. This is the most trusted source traders, investors and institutions use to track the US employment situation, which sheds light on the strength of the economy and potentially inflation. The report causes a massive reshuffling in positions, and seeing a 100 pip movement in the GBP/USD in the moments following the announcement is not uncommon.

On a typical Friday, the GBP/USD will move approximately 100 pips (10-week average as of Oct. 22, 2013). On a non-farm payroll release day, intraday movement can be much larger. Below is one strategy, I have covered a couple others, which are a bit more adaptable, in this article: Forex Strategy for Day Trading Non-Farm Payrolls (NFP) Report .

Non-farm Payroll Forex Strategy Setup

The strategy uses the GBP/USD and a 15-minute chart. A 15-minute chart allows the initial volatility to subside, but still allows us to capture a large potential move once the market participants make a more rational decision about whether they want to buy or sell based on the news. This is the trend this non-farm payroll forex strategy attempts to capture…the rational trend which follows the initial surge.

The EUR/USD could also be used, but since the GBP/USD usually has a bigger daily range than the EUR/USD it provides great opportunity. A 5-minute chart can also be used, but is prone to more false signals.

Non-farm Payroll Forex Strategy Rules

1. Do nothing for the first 15 minutes after the NFP announcement. A wide-ranging price bar will occur between 8:30 to 8:45 AM EST. This bar is of no concern.

2. Wait for an inside bar. An inside bar is a 15-minute price bar where the high and low are completely inside a prior bar range.

Figure 1. Wide-Ranging and Inside Bars for Non-Farm Payroll Forex Strategy – 15-Minute Chart

Forex strategy

Figure 1 shows a wide-ranging bar followed by an inside bar. The inside bar doesn’t always immediately follow a wide-ranging bar. Depending on volatility and the strength of the initial push, we may need to wait a couple bars in order for an inside bar to occur. The inside bar doesn’t need to be inside the wide-ranging bar either, we just need a bar that is inside another bar. This shows us the market has calmed down and is likely to soon choose its more rational direction.

3. The high and low of the inside bar become your trade triggers. If the price rises above the high of the inside bar, buy. If the price drops below the low the inside bar, sell.

4. Place a 30 pip stop initially, or place it below the most recent low if you bought, or above the most recent high if you sold. But your stop should not exceed 30 pips.

Figure 2. Non-Farm Payroll Forex Strategy Entry and Stop Example – 15 Minute Chart

Forex strategy

In this example, the initial inside bar which followed the wide-ranging bar is used for the trade trigger. Following the initial inside bar, two more inside bars followed. This basically created a range, so in this case waiting for the breakout of that range was prudent. Either of these other inside bars could technically be used as trade triggers though.

The horizontal blue dotted lined shows the entry, which is set a pip or two above the inside bar high. The dotted line in the lower part of the screen marks the stop-loss order. Initially the stop loss is set to 30 pips, but in this case it was moved up to just below the recent lows, reducing the risk to 25 pips.

We do not need to wait for a bar to close in order to enter a trade. As soon as the high or low of the inside bar is pierced, take the trade.

5. Exit 4 hours after your entry. This is a timed exit. Once the trend begins it will often last for about 4 hours. If you enter at 9:15 AM, exit the trade at 1:15 PM EST. Exit at 2:00 PM EST even if it has not been 4 hours since your entry. By 2:00 PM other factors are likely to start affecting the pair, and most of the movement based on the NFP number will be exhausted.

6. Don’t take more than 2 trades. If you get stopped out on 2 trades, the movement is too choppy. Stash the strategy away until the next non-farm payroll number, or other high impact news release.

7. This step is optional, but you can implement some sort of trailing stop to avoid giving up your profit if the trend reverses while holding the position. As the trend progresses, move the stop to just below recent swing lows if you are long, or just below recent highs if you are short.

Figure 3 shows the whole GBPUSD trade for the October 22, 2013, Non-farm payroll release. In a rare event, the data was released on a Tuesday due to the US government shutdown on the Friday the data was supposed to be released. Ultimately the trade produced about a 54 pip profit at the 4-hour time target. Original risk was 25 pips, but could have been trailed up, locking in a profit, after the first consolidation. Sometimes wins will much bigger, and other times slightly smaller.

Figure 3. NFP Forex Strategy in GBPUSD with Entry Stop and Timed Target – 15-Minute Chart (click to enlarge)

Forex strategy

Non-Farm Payroll Forex Strategy – Considerations and Pitfalls

Overall I have been using this strategy–or one very similar to it–for than 5 years, and find it to be a reliable strategy. It can experiences strings of losses though. The worst days are when 2 false signals occur in one day, which means 40 to 60 pips could be lost. This is rare, but can occur. Although, on any choppy day a trend following strategy is likely to experience more losses. Profits are usually much larger than losses on winning trades, which should more than offset losing trades.

If the GBP/USD doesn’t move much following the non-farm payroll announcement, then the news release is likely a “non-event” and the strategy should not be employed. Ideally, we want to see a 50+ pip spike (up or down) following the announcement, which lets us know there is some reshuffling of positions and a trend is likely to ensue.

This strategy can be used on other major news releases, such as interest rate announcements, assuming there is a strong burst of activity following the announcement, and a valid trade signal occurs like in the example above.

As a final note, don’t take trades just before the announcement trying to predict which way the market will spike. Even if you guess right, you’re likely to experience extreme slippage, and therefore your risk is unknown. Better to wait for a valid trade signal like the one provided above, and trade the trend that happens after the spike.

This strategy is included in the The Forex Trading Strategies Guide for Day and Swing Traders eBook. Read the book for way more strategies and information you can use to conquer the forex market.

ForexTraining Group

Learn forex trading

In this article, we will take a look at how to trade the EURUSD pair. This pair is the most liquid currency pair in forex and consists of the two most important currencies worldwide – the U.S Dollar … [Read more. ]

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Heikin Ashi candlesticks are a unique charting method which get attached to your standard price chart on your trading terminal. The chart will resemble a typical Japanese Candlestick chart, however … [Read more. ]

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Arbitrage in the world of finance refers to a trading strategy that takes advantage of irregularities in a financial market. Forex arbitrage involves identifying and taking advantage of price … [Read more. ]

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Forex calculators are a necessary and extremely helpful set of tools to help traders manage their risk. The Forex markets are a challenging and volatile asset class and must be approached with the … [Read more. ]

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Trading pullbacks in a trending market is one of the most time-tested Forex trading strategies out there. The beauty of a well thought out pullback trading system is that you enter the market or place … [Read more. ]

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Forex trading using economic indicators can be tough, as traders are overwhelmed with a variety of information which can lead to overanalyzing the market and even become counter-productive. To avoid … [Read more. ]

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Learn forex trading

There are many ways to gain exposure to the currency markets. Over the past decade, foreign currency ETFs have surged in popularity, allowing those who have equity brokerage accounts to gain access … [Read more. ]

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Trading currencies by the retail public is a relatively new development in the world of trading. What was once the domain of large financial institutions, banks and large corporations, has become … [Read more. ]

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Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a well-known metric of economics and often mentioned in the news or on financial market programs. It is also one of the single most important parameters when creating a … [Read more. ]

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Learn forex trading

The ADX trend strength indicator is one of the most widely used tools to determine the strength of a trend in the security being analyzed. Technical traders typically use the ADX (Average Directional … [Read more. ]

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Trading Tutorials – Forex Strategies

Trading tutorials focused on forex strategies. Use them, alter them or build on them to suit your individual preferences.

Forex Strategy Articles

Forex Strategies Guide For Day and Swing Traders 2.0 eBook. Over 300 pages of Forex basics and 20+ Forex strategies for profiting in the 24-hours-a-day Forex market. This isn’t just an eBook, it’s a course, building your skill step by step.

How to Day Trade the Forex Market In Two Hours or Less a Day – Here’s how I day trade the forex market, specifically the EURUSD and/or GBPUSD (can use in other pairs too), in two hours or less. If you’re a day trader this is a must read. Master this and you’ll take your trading to a whole new level (regardless of what strategy you use).

Day Trading the EURUSD – Time Frames and Analyzing the Trend (Video). Learn how to day trade on the 1-minute chart without looking at other time frames. This video shows how to plan ahead, when not to trade and how to use market tendencies to better plan entries, stop losses and targets.

Indicators to Use For Day Trading EURUSD – Here are the indicators you may use for day trading the EURUSD, when using the method discussed in How to Day Trade Forex (EURUSD) in Two Hours or Less.

Do You Find Day Trading the EURUSD Tougher Lately? – The EURUSD is the recommended pair for day trading forex, most of the time. There are times when it is tougher to day trade.

How to Determine the Proper Position Size When Trading – Any Trade, Any Market. Position size is how many shares you take on a stock trade, how many contracts you take on a futures trade, or how many lots you trade in the forex market. Position size is not randomly chosen, nor based on how convinced you are a trade will work out. Rather, position size is determined by a simple mathematical formula which helps control risk and maximize returns on the risk taken.

Adapting to Changing Environments While Day Trading the EURUSD – Noticing tendencies and how to adapt your strategy when trading conditions change.

Determining Profit Target and Stop Levels When Day Trading Forex (Video) – a video which describes in more detail how to set stop levels and targets each for the strategy described in How to Day Trade the Forex Market in Two Hours or Less a Day.

Predict Chart Pattern Breakout Direction for Lower Risk Trades – A non-traditional approach to trading charts patterns. It requires skill in being able to read the market, but provides a better entry price–providing lower risk and greater profit potential.

Video: How to Use Forex Swing Trade Signals – Describes the strategy used to produce the forex swing trading signals that are occasionally posted on the site (swing trading based on 4hour/1hour charts).

High Probability Forex Engulfing Candle Trading Strategy – A trading strategy using engulfing candles as an entry point into a defined trend. Useful for noting the transition from pullback to trend. Provides an alternate entry method compared to the “traditional” approach.

Trend Trading: How to Spot Trading Opportunities – You can consistently catch trend trades by understanding how trends work and developing trade triggers. Here’s how to spot trading opportunities.

ABC Forex Trading Strategy – (Video ) – A simple but powerful price pattern seen in all markets; it gets you in in the direction of strong momentum.

Truncated Price Swing Trading Strategy for Stocks or Forex – The following day trading strategy for stocks and forex works best near a market open. I call the trading strategy the Truncated Price Swing.

Day Trade Trending Strategy – A simple and highly effective day trade trending strategy that gets you into trend trades, but keeps you out when the market isn’t trending.

EUR/USD Day Trading Strategy Insights – An article with links to several articles which delve very deeply into how to day trade the EUR/USD successfully.

Simple Non-Farm Payroll Forex Strategy – A strategy for trading one of the most high-impact news releases in forex.

Forex Strategies – Simple and Effective – Basic strategy idea that you can personalize and build off of.

COT Report Forex Trading – Using the Commitment of Traders Report in the Forex Market – A report which shows how speculators and commercial traders are positioned in the market; this provides information on when a market is likely to continue to trend or reverse.

Forex Strategies – Create Your Own – Learn a simple methodology for creating new forex strategies.

Forex Long-Term Investing Strategy/Course – Dr. Codirla has created the FX Master Course. Learn strategies he used to bolster his hedge fund into one of the top performing in the world, receiving a BarclayHedge Top 10 Award for Net Return in Currency Trading. One of his strategies has a 30-year history of consistent investor returns.

Forex Swing Trading Video Series

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Pairs to Follow and Setting Up Charts – What pairs to watch for swing trading, along with how to set up your charts so can quickly scan through all the pairs in less than 20 minutes a day (or just once a week).

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Time Frames and Trend Strategy – This video looks at what time frames I use while swing trading forex, and also one of the trending strategies I use.

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Crotch Strategy and Strong Support and Resistance. A look at STRONG support and resistance, which is different than normal support and resistance. Once you know this concept, you can take powerful reversal trades with it, that quite often have huge reward-to-risk ratios (I will be talking about fine-tuning profit targets in a later video, so you can really capitalize on these opportunities).

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Position Sizing and Risk Management. This video looks at how to manage risk and how to get the correct position size, on every trade, so that you stay within your risk tolerance. In other words, positions are never too small or too large, they are just right.

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Fine Tuning Profit Targets to Maximize Probable Gains :This video looks at how to fine-tune your profit targets, so you can make big reward:risk trades, while the profit target still has a good chance of being hit.

Forex Swing Trading in 20 Minutes – Managing Trading Once in Them. This video looks at simple ways to manage your trades once in them. Managing your trades is when you adjust your stop loss or target once you are in the trade. I discuss when this can be done, and when it shouldn’t be done. I also discuss the pros and cons (the trade-off) of leaving your trades alone or adjusting your trade levels.

Day Trade Example Articles

Forex strategies

One click trading, set your target and stop (in pips) before placing the trade.

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Forex market for beginner traders

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Forex traders are buying and selling currencies. Usually their work is to make transactions, based on simple arithmetic rules: to buy as cheap as possible and to sell as expensive as possible. After completing the following few steps, you’ll know how to trade on Forex market.

Registering Members Area and opening trading account

To start trading on Forex market with RoboForex, you need to register Members Area and open a trading account. For beginner traders, we recommend either Demo-Standard demo account or MT4 Fix-Cent real cent account.

Demo account is an excellent way to learn how to trade using virtual money without any risk of losing real funds. You don’t have to make any significant financial investments, 10 USD is enough to start trading.

Forex for beginners Open demo account

Forex for beginners Open cent account

After registering a trading account, its number and password required for entering in the settings of your trading platform before you start using it will be sent to your e-mail address.

Downloading and installing MetaTrader4 trading platform

Today, MetaTrader4 is one of the most popular trading platforms in the world. In order to buy and sell currencies, you need to download this platform from our website and install it on your PC. It only takes several minutes and then you can start trading on Forex market.

Forex for beginners

Training how to trade

In order to help you to learn how to predict the movement of currency pairs, the RoboForex Company offers you a lot of educational and reference materials.

Forex educational video tutorial

Technical analysis and Forex forecasts

Webinars from RoboForex experts

Depositing your trading account

If you feel that you are ready to start trading with real money, you need to deposit your trading account. It can be done in "Deposit/Withdrawal " section of your Members Area. You can deposit your trading account using any available payment system, which is more convenient to you. You can reveive "Tradable Protection up to 50%" when depositing your account.

Forex for beginners

Trading on Forex market: how to open orders

After depositing your trading account, you’ll see your account balance in trading platform.

Forex for beginners

To make a transaction in MetaTrader4 platform, you need to right-click on the chart of the currency pair you’d like to trade and choose "New Order" from "Trade" window.

Forex for beginners

To open new order, you need to specify the volume (we recommend to start with minimum, 0.01) and then choose between Sell and Buy.

Forex for beginners

After that, your order is open, meaning that you’ve started trading on Forex market on your own.

Forex for beginners

If you have any questions, you can address them to our Live Support specialists using the following ways available on our website: onlinechat, free telephone call, "Online Call" and "Callback Service".

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Acclaimed Speaker

Greg is regularly called into the media for his expert opinion on market direction. He has spoken on most major market channels including CNBC and Bloomberg. Now a recognised speaker, Greg is regularly invited to speak alongside renowned personalities such as Tony Blair, Richard Branson, Robert Kiyoski, T Harv Eker, Anthony Robbins and many others.

Acclaimed Speaker

Greg is regularly called into the media for his expert opinion on market direction. He has spoken on most major market channels including CNBC and Bloomberg. Now a recognised speaker, Greg is regularly invited to speak alongside renowned personalities such as Tony Blair, Richard Branson, Robert Kiyoski, T Harv Eker, Anthony Robbins and many others.


Having had such abundant success so early on in his life, Greg had long been looking for ways to give back. In 2011 he set up a non-profit charitable foundation, committed to positively improving the quality of life for children around the world. In 2013 the foundation opened The Kasani Crèche in Johannesburg with support from Richard Branson’s charity, Virgin Unite.


Having had such abundant success so early on in his life, Greg had long been looking for ways to give back. In 2011 he set up a non-profit charitable foundation, committed to positively improving the quality of life for children around the world. In 2013 the foundation opened The Kasani Crèche in Johannesburg with support from Richard Branson’s charity, Virgin Unite.

Wealth Expert

On his travels around international trading floors, Greg discovered the world’s best strategies, which he further developed and continues to teach in his award winning courses today. Since Greg founded Learn to Trade over 250,000 people have attended his Forex trading workshops across the globe, to earn a secondary income from the most liquid market in the world.

Wealth Expert

On his travels around international trading floors, Greg discovered the world’s best strategies, which he further developed and continues to teach in his award winning courses today. Since Greg founded Learn to Trade over 200,000 people have attended his Forex trading workshops across the globe, to earn a secondary income from the most liquid market in the world.

Here’s Why You Should Attend!

Our Graduates Know Best:

My experience with Learn to Trade has been so amazing! They have provided me with all the necessary education and tools available in making money, turning me into a very profitable and professional trader. And they’re the best in the world, I could say.

Here’s Why You Should Attend!

Our Graduates Know Best:

Since March I started tracking my net worth and I’m up 87%. Just no stopping now and this all started with 3 days with Learn to Trade! Over the past few months I have been consistently improving my trading. I have two consecutive positive % profit months now. I ended March with 3% improvement from being -2.52% profits in Feb. In April, I finished strong with 5% improvement from being -3.8% profits on the second week. I would like to thank you for your coaching. When we worked together on my trading plan, you told me that consistency is my weakness for now. I put that to heart. I worked and continuously working on aligning beliefs that is supportive of becoming consistent.

Here’s Why You Should Attend!

Our Graduates Know Best:

Having worked in the IT industry for over 20 years in various ‘9 to 5’ jobs I thought there must be a better and easier way to secure my financial future – that’s when I found Trading. I attended a LTT Forex Workshop and realised this was the way to earn a second income and improve my quality of life. I enrolled on one of the LTT courses where the coaches demystified what I (and most people) think about Trading – too hard, complicated & risky…the opposite is true. While working my IT ‘day job’ I reached a level that enabled me to Trade full time after 6 months and found myself a new passion. I made 7.5% profit in December, and my best winning trade to date is EURUSD with a 2% return.

Kevan – February 2016

Here’s Why You Should Attend!

Our Graduates Know Best:

The GFC brought my property development business to a standstill; I needed income and I needed it regularly. Enter Forex. I came to LTT with a vision of creating a monthly income stream that I could achieve on a part-time basis. After attending the Learn Forex course at LTT I knew I was in the right place to learn Forex trading. The trading software made it easy to choose my trades, the learning environment and support from expert traders is second to none. That’s what inspired me to write my book “Foreign Exchange Trading: My First Six Months”. LTT inspired me to become a successful trader!

Steve – Jan 2016

Here’s Why You Should Attend!

Our Graduates Know Best:

I’m currently residing in Dubai and work as an Operations Accountant in Hellmann Worldwide Logistics. I’ve always been fascinated with the financial world and dreamt of making it big. My interest in Forex grew after attending Learn to Trade’s Forex Introductory Workshops and Greg Secker’s videos on the learning aspects of Forex. My experience with LTT has been marvellous. Everyone has been supportive – they are just a click away and always respond to my needs at the earliest. I have been able to acquire a lot of knowledge and expertise based on the presenters and I can foresee myself doing better and getting better with each trade placed.

Harsh – Jan 2016

Forex 101 – The Basics Of Forex Trading

Contents in this article

Forex stands for “Foreign exchange” which means that foreign currencies are being traded. The Foreign Exchange market is the largest market in the world with a turnover of around $5.3 trillion (yes, with a T!) per day. 1 In the Forex market, there are a variety of different players: banks, governments, international corporations who have exposure to foreign currencies, insurance companies, professional traders, hedge funds and millions of amateur retail traders.

Forex trading is so popular because it’s very easy to get started, it’s possible (although not recommended) to trade with small accounts and the sometimes huge volatility offers great profit potential – but also makes it risky.

Looking for a broker? We recommend IC Markets. Take a look at the site and download their free demo platform – demo means that you only have play money and you can still have access to the real Forex market.

New: Free Forex 101 beginners course

Forex trading sessions

The Forex market does not have the same open and closing times as the stock market or other financial markets. You can trade currencies 5 days a week, 24 hours a day from Monday morning when the Australian financial markets open, until Friday night when the American market closes.

When it comes to Forex trading, there are 4 main sessions throughout the day:

Sidney: Australian trading session (AUD, NZD)

Tokyo: Asian trading session (JPY)

London: European trading session (GBP, EUR, CHF)

New York: American trading session (USD, CAD)

When you select the Forex pairs that you trade, it’s important to understand that the individual currencies move most during their ‘own’ trading time. This means that the USD/JPY usually moves most during the New York (USD) and the Asian (JPY) session. The AUD/USD is most active during the Australian (AUD) and the New York (USD) session. Generally, the overlap between the European and the American session is the most active trading session overall.

No-gaps, over-night exposure and risk

As a Forex trader, you’ll always be able to find a moving market any time of the day. Furthermore, the 24-hours open characteristic also means that there are no opening-closing price gaps like in stock trading which many Forex trader enjoy – the stock markets close over night and when they open the next day, you can often see large price gaps.

However, as a Forex trader, you have over-night exposure and sometimes volatile price movements happen during the night when you are not in front of your screens which has to be factored in as well and can be a risk factor.

Forex trading basics

News and Forex trading

News and macroeconomic events are heavily influencing currency and Forex prices. As a Forex trader, it’s essential to keep track of important news events. Even if you are a purely technical trader, knowing when news events are scheduled is important to make the right trading decisions.

Before, during and after a news release a trader has a few choices and here are our top tips for dealing with news as a Forex trader:

1) Don’t take new trades ahead of important news events.

2) If price is close to your take profit, close your position ahead of high impact news and don’t gamble with your profits.

3) Tighten your stop loss when you are in a trade. In times of high volatility, stops might not get executed at their actual price level. It might, therefore, be safer to close your existing positions before a news event.

4) Wait 30 – 60 minutes after a news release before entering a new trade. Post-news price volatility can be very erratic and unpredictable. Let the dust settle before you make a decision.

The next question is which news events you should follow. ForexFactory has a great news calendar that always gives you the most important news for the day. They also mark the news item based on impact-level and show which currency is most impacted. Here is a list of the biggest market movers for Forex traders:

  • GDP (Gross Domestic Product)
  • Unemployment data and especially the US NFP
  • CPI (Consumer Price Index) which is a proxy for inflation
  • Interest rate decisions – interest rates are the main long tern drivers of currencies
  • Central Bank meetings (FED, ECB, BOE, SNB, BOJ, RBA)

What is a currency pair?

The fact that currencies are quoted and traded in pairs brings many unique characteristics with it as we will see shortly.

Whenever you look at a Forex quote and chart, you’ll see that the currencies are quoted using two names – the pair. For example, EUR/USD means that you trade the EURO against the US-Dollar. The first currency (the EURO in that case) is called the Base currency ; the second currency is called the Quote currency. The EUR/USD, therefore, shows how many USD you need to 1 EURO.

Forex trading basics

Bid and ask price

When you look at your broker’s Forex price feed, you will see two different prices for each Forex pair: the bid and the ask price. The ask price is the price that you have to pay when you enter a buy trade and the bid price is the price you have to pay when you want to enter a sell trade; the ask price is always higher than the bid price. The difference between the two prices is called spread (or bid-ask spread) and it represents the costs of trading and the broker’s commissions.

The screenshot below shows a regular MetaTrader view. On the left at (1) you see a list of tradable Forex pairs with their bid and ask price. In the middle you see the order-execution window. You can enter a sell trade for the bid price and a buy trade on the ask.

Forex trading basics

Majors and minors Forex pairs

Typically, Forex traders differentiate between major and minor Forex pairs. The 6 major Forex pairs are the most actively traded pairs and they are usually preferred and recommended to beginning traders. Furthermore, the major pairs are usually less expensive to trade which means that the ‘spread’ is lower.

The table below shows the 6 Forex majors ranked by daily activity.

Minor Forex pairs are often also called ‘exotics’ and they include lesser traded currencies such as NZD (although the NZD has seen a huge increase in activity), Norwegian NOK, Turkish TRY, Singapore’s SGB, Swedish SEK and many others. The spread, and thus the costs, for the minor Forex pairs is usually much higher though.

Your Forex education. If you want to learn more about trading Forex, here is our additional Forex articles and trading tips.

Forex jargon

Aussie – The nickname for the Australian currency

Cable – The nickname for the currency in the UK (GBP)

Candlestick – How traders visualize price information on their charts

Dovish – Looser fiscal policy which typically means lower interest rates to stimulate spending.

Hawkish – Tighter fiscal policy which typically means higher interest rates to encourage saving.

Kiwi – The nickname for the New Zealand currency (NZD)

Loonie – The nickname for the Canadian currency

Long – Traders have a ‘long trade’ when they buy a currency pair

Leverage – A mechanism used by traders in order to trade larger positions with their accounts

Pips – Also ‘price in points’ and it’s a way to measure price distances in Forex trading

Short – Traders have a ‘short trade’ when they sell a currency pair

Spread – The difference between the bid and the ask price. It’s the commission you pay to enter a trade

Forex Trading Academy

Risk Disclaimer

Trading Futures, Forex, CFDs and Stocks involves a risk of loss. Please consider carefully if such trading is appropriate for you. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Articles and content on this website are for entertainment purposes only and do not constitute investment recommendations or advice.
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Tradeciety used images and image licenses downloaded and obtained through Fotolia. Flaticon. Freepik and Unplash.
Trading charts have been obtained using Tradingview. Stockcharts and FXCM. Icon design by

Forex Trading for Beginners

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    Forex trading for beginners

    Online Forex trading for beginners can be especially tough. This is mostly due to unrealistic expectations that are common among Forex newcomers.

    What you need to know is that Forex trading is by no means a get-rich-quick scheme. Forex traders do not get wealthy over a night, week or even a month.

    The sooner new traders realise this, the less money it will cost them.

    Perhaps the most surprising statistic for newcomers, is that 90% of retail traders lose 90% of their investment in 90 days. Unfortunately, for the vast majority of these traders, the loss could have been avoided.

    Complete Forex Trading Beginner Guide

    Let’s look at these 17 priceless Forex trading tips for beginners, which can help you avoid being part of the 90% who lose their investment.

    You can always try using risk-free demo account to get a better feeling for the market.

    Forex trading for beginners

    The Retail Trading Food Chain

    Knowing how the industry is mapped out is important, because the collective combination of all participants creates the market you trade in.

    The relative weight of the trading party to the market, is measured by how much money that party manages – from billion dollar hedge funds and investment banks to private traders with a few thousand dollars in action.

    Long-Term Is Safer Than Short

    The initial stages of your trading are about preserving your capital – not growing it. Minimising risk is the primary objective. The easiest way to achieve this, is to use a long-term trading stance.

    What casual Forex trading beginners generally fail to realise, is that most successful traders make money from long-term trends. They hold their orders open for weeks, months and even years. This way, Forex works as an investment and less as a lottery.

    Long-term trading requires patience and modesty in trading volume.

    And as a payoff, it requires fewer hours spent staring at the screen and therefore less stress. Math is obviously useful in online Forex trading, too. And thankfully, there’s some simple ways to calculate what balance, leverage and trading volume you need per instrument, to keep your risks in check.

    Keep It Simple

    Do not overload your charts with indicators and your strategy with handles or switches. The more complicated your trading strategy is, the harder it will be to follow and the less likely it is to work.

    Here’s an example of one of the most basic Forex trading strategy for beginners:

    1. apply a 10-day simple moving average to any chart you like
    2. every time a candle closes above it, it’s your Buy signal
    3. every time it closes below, close your Buy and open a Sell.

    This is a reversion trading strategy, since one order closing leads to an opposite direction order opening. The strategy is simple and like any other strategy, it’s fallible.

    Using this strategy is a trending market for example, has the potential to be very profitable. But if used in a ranging market, the reverse is true.

    To find out how well a strategy performs on average in different markets, you need to carry out the necessary backtesting and research. Keeping it simple can be a challenge, especially considering the multitude of supporting tools you can apply to your charts.

    Just remember – it’s not about the amount of tools at your disposal, but it is about being able to use a few tools well.

    Reconsider Buying Software

    Forex trading, for beginners or professionals, will require software. Competition between brokers means that most Forex trading software is available for free.

    Many Forex trading beginners are also tempted to purchase FX robots a.k.a. Expert Advisers (EA). While some EAs can be helpful, it can be hard for them to stay profitable when the market changes.

    And unless you understand the code it’s written in, you’re probably not going to be able to adapt your EA to work with those changes.

    For example, a particular EA could work exceedingly well in a trending market, or wipe out your balance in a ranging market within seconds. If you are one of the many who believe EA would outperform the market, then try it out with MT4 Supreme Edition.

    Forex trading for beginners

    Learn Technical and Fundamental Analysis

    Analysis is absolutely vital to trading. Charts are helpful for both short and long-term trading. You should be looking at daily, weekly and monthly charts.

    Any Forex trading guide for beginners of technical analysis will tell you that your main tools are:

    1. trend lines
    2. support and resistance lines
    3. indicators based on the above.

    Meanwhile, understanding fundamental analysis allows traders to gain an understanding of how one country’s news events and financial policies can affect the Forex ecosystem.

    Trading Accounts Differ in More Than Minimum Deposit Amounts

    Attributes such as minimum deposit and tight spreads are one of the last points to consider when opening a long-term trading account. Pay attention instead to instrument portfolios, execution models and the leverage offered.

    The best Forex trading platform for beginners depends on the broker. The best Forex broker for beginners depends on trading system.

    What’s important is the quote feed which also depends on the broker.

    Be cautious of Dealing Desk accounts, unless you are specifically interested in conditions offered by them. Their features usually include momentous execution, fixed spreads and low minimum deposits. This simply means you are trading with the broker rather than through it.

    This type of broker can be advantageous, particularly for those interested in scalping.

    Forex trading for beginners

    Be Careful In Volatile Markets

    Volatility is what keeps your trading activity moving. However, if you’re not careful it can also completely destroy it. When volatile, the market moves sideways, which makes spreads grow and your orders slip.

    Incorporate volatility analysis into your trading strategy. As a beginner Forex trader, you need to accept that once you are in the market. Anything can potentially happen, and it can completely negate your strategy.

    For example, the crisis with the Swiss franc in January 2015, ended business for many traders and brokers within hours.

    Admiral Markets have helped to minimise volatility risk for you by offering a package of advanced volatility trading settings to help you avoid the reefs of the financial markets.

    Everything Is Old News in This Industry

    Updates you hear on CNN. Bloomberg and in your Trader’s Calendar have already been discounted by the market. The only thing that news promises, is volatility.

    Spreads grow when news is out and before you know it, you are deep in re-quotes and slipping stop-losses. Unless you are a professional news trader, stay away from news trading.

    The Trend Is Your Friend

    Whether you are a beginner trader or a pro, you are best to trade with what you see and not what you think.

    For example, you might think that the US dollar is overvalued and has been overvalued for too long. Naturally, you will want to short and you might be right eventually.

    But if the price is moving up, it does not matter what you think. In fact, it doesn’t matter what anybody thinks – the price is moving up and you should be trading with the trend.

    There Are Hundreds of Available Markets

    When learning about Forex trading, many beginners focus on major currency pairs because of their generous daily volatility and tight spreads.

    But there’s numerous other opportunities – from exotic FX pairs. stocks, commodities and energy futures to indices. There are even indices that track groups of indices and you can trade them as well.

    How many markets you scan for opportunities is up to you, but do not limit yourself to one instrument or one market. Market limitation leads to overtrading, so diversify your investment.

    The Trade Is Open Until It’s Closed

    A regular Forex trading beginner concentrates on opening a trade, but the exit point is equally important.

    If your trading strategy does not consider the mechanism of closing a deal, it’s not going to end well, and you’re much more likely to suffer heavy losses.

    Ensure You Are Legally Protected

    Financial trading is usually a legally regulated activity. Government-assigned regulators of brokerage firms urge caution to Forex trading beginners across the globe.

    When checking for secure conditions in investing or trading, three major points to look for are:

    1. segregation of client funds – assures your money is not used by your broker for anything except your trading, which makes it always available for withdrawal upon your request
    2. financial services compensation scheme – defines the amounts of funds that will be compensated to you in the extreme case of your broker or its bank going bankrupt
    3. efficient customer enquiry and complaints procedure – ensures that if an enquiry is filed by a Forex trader and cannot be resolved within a few hours, it is immediately forwarded to the customer support desk or compliance department.

    Whatever happens, make sure your investment is protected.

    Test on a Demo Account or with a simulation software

    Every broker offers a demo account – beginner or not, test every new strategy there first. Not once, not 10 times, not even a 100 times, but until the results are conclusive and you are confident in what you are testing.

    Only then should you open a live account and use your strategy in the smallest volume trades available. Be sure to treat your demo account trades as if they were real trades.

    You may also use Forex simulation software to simulate market conditions, creating an impression of a live trading session.

    Write Everything Down

    A novice Forex trader must develop the mindset of a business owner. Every business requires a business plan, constant monitoring and regular auditing. Jumping ahead without plans and processes is a surefire way to fail.

    Starting a trading journal is an absolute must. Everyday, be sure to write the following:

    1. points for further research
    2. reasons to open or close a trade
    3. your achievements and mistakes.

    Keep your journal handy as a point of reference when analysing your activity. A journal ensures none of your actions are in vain. Analysis of good trades will boost your trading confidence and motivate you to push harder and go further.

    On the other hand, analysis of bad trades will help you extract value and improve.

    Do Your Research

    Generally speaking, the less you know, the more at risk you are, and there is no limit to how much you can know or risk. An endless amount of information is available on the internet free of charge, like:

    Want to know how to learn Forex trading for beginners? Read everything and always analyse everything you read – don’t just take information in good faith.
    Learn to trade step-by-step with our brand new educational course, Forex 101, featuring key insights from professional industry experts.

    Forex trading for beginners

    As exciting as trading can be, it is still stressful work. There will be a lot of setbacks on your way to the top. Emotions can force your hand to open a trade too early and/or close it too late.

    The main cause of stress for beginners in trading is the fact that some Forex trades will end in loss no matter what – it’s just the way the market is.

    Just remember that war is not won with a single battle. Rather, it is overall performance that counts (which by they way, is another reason to keep a trading journal).

    Financing Your Trading

    Only one kind of money is good for investing and that’s the kind that you are willing to lose. Preferably without damaging your physical and/or mental well being in the process.

    An old saying sums up this article:

    “Every profitable trader is profitable in his own way, while every loser loses exactly the same way.”

    We hope this article has given you some helpful tips, toward being a successful trader over the long term. Use every chance you get to learn.

    Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.

    Risk warning:Trading foreign exchange or contracts for differences on margin carries a high level of risk, and may not be suitable for all investors. There is a possibility that you may sustain a loss equal to or greater than your entire investment. Therefore, you should not invest or risk money that you cannot afford to lose. You should ensure you understand all of the risks. Before using Admiral Markets UK Ltd services please acknowledge the risks associated with trading.

    The content of this Website must not be construed as personal advice. Admiral Markets UK Ltd recommends you seek advice from an independent financial advisor.

    Admiral Markets UK Ltd is fully owned by Admiral Markets Group AS. Admiral Markets Group AS is a holding company and its assets are a controlling equity interest in Admiral Markets AS and its subsidiaries, Admiral Markets UK Ltd and Admiral Markets Pty.

    All references on this site to ‘Admiral Markets’ refer to Admiral Markets UK Ltd and subsidiaries of Admiral Markets Group AS.

    Admiral Markets (UK) Ltd. is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. (FCA Register No. 595450).

    Admiral Markets (UK) Ltd. is registered in England and Wales under Companies’ House. Registered Number 08171762. Company address: 16 St. Clare Street, London EC3N 1LQ, UK.

  • How to Build a Trading Strategy

    When trading in markets, it is often beneficial to have a strategic approach. While the concept of trading on hunches and whims – and being profitable doing so, may sound attractive; in practice it is much more difficult and far less likely than if one had a formulaic approach with which they look to speculate in markets.

    There are many ways of doing this. This article will walk through the primary areas that traders want to look to when building their strategies.

    Before the strategy is ever created, the trader first needs to decide which market condition they are looking take advantage of. In the first part of our How to Build a Strategy series. we looked at this topic in detail. And as we saw, markets will display 3 primary conditions: Trend, Range, and Breakout (as shown in the illustration below).

    Forex strategy

    Created with Marketscope/Trading Station

    Each of these market conditions can exhibit markedly different tones. Ranges can commonly take place during quiet markets. The support and/or resistance that define ranges become broken when price breaks out, often from some form of news or stimuli.

    Breakouts can be fast and furious, running quickly to a traders stop or limit. Breakouts can be extremely volatile, and as such, these strategies need to be built differently than range or trend strategies in regards to money, and risk management.

    Once a bias has begun to set in the market, longer-term trends can develop. Once again, this is a unique condition that necessitates an approach different than range or trending markets.

    Once a trader has decided which market condition they want to build their strategy for, they then need to decide which timeframes they want to analyze and execute their trades on. In The Time Frames of Trading. we explored the more common intervals that traders may want to investigate based on desired holding times.

    We went further to explore the concept of Multiple Time Frame Analysis. in which traders can use a longer-term chart to gauge the general trends or sentiment that may exist in a currency pair; and then using a shorter-term chart to get a more granular look as they enter the trade.

    Multiple Time Frame Analysis Intervals; prepared by James Stanley

    Entering the Trade

    The next step in building a strategy is to begin to design how the trader will be entering trades. As we looked at in Grading Market Conditions. support and resistance can define ranges, thereby defining breakouts while also offering quite a bit of assistance with risk management in trend-based strategies.

    Forex strategy

    EURUSD interacting with the 1.30 level/Created with Marketscope/Trading Station

    After a trader has decided on the mannerisms of support and resistance to be utilized in the strategy, they then need to find a way to grade the strength of price moves. In How to Build a Strategy, Part 4: Grading Trends. we tied together some of the earlier concepts of price action, multiple time frame analysis, and market conditions to help traders see that they can grade how ‘strong’ a trend has been.

    Forex strategy

    (Created with Trading Station 2.0/Marketscope)

    In How to Build a Strategy, Part 5: Risk Management. we looked at what many traders consider to be the most important part of creating, trading, and maintaining a trading approach; and that is the manner in which traders are managing risk.

    Much of this part of the series was based around the research performed by DailyFX in the Traits of Successful Traders research study.

    In the DailyFX Traits of Successful Traders series, actual results from real traders on over 12 million trades were analyzed in an effort to find what had worked best, and how traders could work towards those results.

    We looked at the fact that while many traders may win more often than they lose (with a winning percentage greater than 50%), it was the amount of their gains and/or losses that would often predicate their success or failure in markets. We then went on to talk about using risk-to-reward ratios in which the trader stands to make more if they are right than they could lose if they are wrong. The picture below will show a 1-to-2 risk-to-reward ratio:

    Forex strategy

    1-to-2 Risk-to-Reward Ratio, as illustrated on FXCM Trading Station II

    We then went on to investigate the concept of leverage, as outlined in How Much Capital Should I Trade Forex With. by Jeremy Wagner. This was the 4 th and final installment of the Traits of Successful Traders series. and provides some very insightful information.

    Forex strategy

    From the graph, we can see that traders with larger balances (between $5,000 and $9,999) used lower levels of leverage (shown on the bottom of the graph); and these lower levels of leverage allowed for greater profitability.

    Traders using leverage of 5:1 were profitable 37.37% of the time, while traders with balances below $1,000 were using, on average, 26:1 leverage – and were only profitable 20.91% of the time. This is a massive deviation, as traders using a moderate 5:1 leverage ratio were profitable 78% more frequently than traders using 26:1 leverage.

    suggests that ‘ traders should look to use an effective leverage of 10-to-1 or less .’

    When to Execute Your Strategy

    Up to this point, we have covered many of the areas that traders would want to look to when building their strategies. Perhaps as important, if not more so – is when we will actually be trading the strategy that we are creating.

    One of the key differentiators of the FX Market is the fact that it doesn’t close. We discussed this topic in detail in the article ‘ Trading the World .’

    Forex strategy

    Charting the 24-hour nature of the FX Market; from Trading the World. by James Stanley

    Although the market is open 24 hours a day, price action can take on markedly different ‘tones’ based on what time of the day it is, and where liquidity is being offered from.

    For instance, the Asian session is generally considered to offer slower price action, with stronger adherence to support and resistance and less potential for ‘big moves.’ Because of this, traders looking to execute range-based strategies may be better served by focusing their entries on the Asian session.

    At 3AM ET, liquidity begins coming in from London. which many traders consider to be the ‘heart’ of the FX Market. London is the largest market center, brings in the most liquidity, and shortly after the open –large moves can often be witnessed on the major currency pairs. Traders that were previously executing range strategies in the Asian session would want to be cautious here, as support and resistance can be broken much more easily with the onslaught of liquidity coming from London. Traders executing breakout strategies can often find the fast and volatile markets they are looking for after the London Open.

    At 8AM, as the United States opens for business even more liquidity flows into the FX Market. This period is considered the ‘overlap,’ when both London and New York market centers are trading; and this is often the most voluminous period of the day in the FX market. Fast moves can be abundant, volatility extremely high, as the potential for reversals can denigrate even the strongest range strategies.

    After London closes for the day, the flavor of the US Session can change quite a bit. Average hourly moves can decrease, and price action can begin to wane. The US Session may take on overtones of what is generally exhibited in the Asian session: slow price moves accented by a greater degree of respect for previously defined support and resistance levels.

    Forex strategy

    Tradesessions custom indicator for Trading Station

    — Written by James B. Stanley

    You can follow James on Twitter @JStanleyFX.

    To join James Stanley’s distribution list, please click here .

    How to trade forex

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