Risk

3 Currency Trading Tips To Help You Make Money

There is a lot of money to be made in foreign exchange trading. Here are currency trading tips to help you maximize your profits.

1. Use weekly charts as well as daily charts

Checking back over the week’s price movements for your chosen currency pair will give you a better perspective on both short and long term trends in the market. It is easy to become blinkered in spot forex trading especially if your method concentrates on day trading. Weekly charts allow you to take a step back.

Sometimes the new perspective that you gain in this way will help you see what went right or wrong with your trading and why. This can help you to refine your systems to make them more profitable. However, do not make changes in a good system every time something goes wrong. There is a need for balance here.

2. Do not trade too much

It is tempting to jump into the market and open a trade whenever you think you spot an opportunity, when really you should have held back. It is often true that the fewer trades you make, the more money you will make. This seems counterintuitive because we tend to think that we need to make a lot of trades to build up big profits. But opening a trade at the wrong moment leads to losses, so in fact the opposite is often true.

You need to be comfortable with risk in order to engage in forex trading. Most traders even enjoy the risk. So it can be difficult to hold back from something that looks like a big opportunity. Remember this is investment, not gambling. You must choose your trades carefully. Taking chances in the hope of making a big killing is likely to lead to your account balance taking a hammering.

If you have a profitable forex trading system that does not often offer the opportunity to trade so it is not making you much money, do not be tempted to widen the criteria so that it lets you trade more often. This will almost certainly turn your profitable system into an unprofitable one.

Instead there are two things you can do. First you can increase the amount of each trade. This increases your risk and is probably not a good idea unless you are very sure of your system. Second you can try to find a different system that is equally profitable that you can operate alongside the first. This is the better option for most people but make sure that you test your new system thoroughly before adopting it.

3. Set realistic targets

When you are thinking about how much money you hope to make with currency trading, it is important to be realistic and accept that sometimes you will lose. You should only be trading with money that you can afford to lose and do not expect to double your money over and over in a short time.

Unfortunately many advertisements lead you to have very high expectations. You may see an ad that suggests you can double your money in 7 days, for example. This does not mean you are certain to double your money, and it definitely does not mean that you can do it every 7 days with no setbacks. Doubling your money in a short time is possible but doing it over and over without losses is not realistic. Expect to take at least one step back for every two steps forward and have reasonable targets by comparing with what you might make if you invested in stocks or bonds.

Before starting forex trading for real, be sure you are armed with sound strategies that you have tested for yourself. Weigh up all of your options and remember that you are entering a risky business. Keep these currency trading tips in mind and give yourself the best chance of succeeding as a forex trader.

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Wednesday, November 24th, 2010 Introduction, Strategy No Comments

Foreign Exchange Brokers: What To Look For

Foreign exchange brokers that cater to the retail investor are springing up all of the time all over the world. What should you look for in selecting a forex broker and how can you be sure you are getting the best?

Everybody starts out currency trading with hopes of having big returns and some of the publicity that you will see will make this sound almost inevitable. In fact of course currency trading is full of risk and many people get their fingers burnt. You could easily lose your startup funds, especially if you start trading for real too soon.

Be sure that you are signing up with a broker who states the risks clearly. When you are starting out you should probably look for a company that will protect you from margin calls by automatically closing your trades if your funds become exhausted. Of course this is a bad situation that you will hope to avoid but it is better than finding you are committed to paying more than you had in the account.

Forex traders often work with 100, 200 or even 400 times leverage. This means that the funds in your account can control 100-400 times their own value. With $100 of the funds in your account you can trade lots of $10,000. So if something goes wrong and the price moves unexpectedly against you, you could be down by more than $100. You can put your own stop losses into place but it is useful to have a broker who will do this in case you forget one time.

Of course you also want to make sure that the brokerage company is honest and will not disappear with your money. If they have been around for a while or form part of a large, reputable company that is a good sign. Another valuable point to consider is whether they are members of any regulatory bodies. This may give you protection if the company goes out of business.

Foreign exchange brokers will offer you various services including charts and technical analysis through their software platform. It is important to know what charts you are likely to need not only for your current system but for other ways that you may want to trade in the future. Compare the charts provided by the different brokers. Think about how you would want to use and combine them and make sure that your chosen broker offers what you need.

You will also want to be sure about the reliability of the software. If it goes offline you could lose the chance to control a trade. Try to find feedback on forex forums or the company’s own forum if there is one, to check how satisfied users are with the reliability of the software platform and also the support provided. Forex is a 24 hour market during the business week and you should be able to get support 24 hours too.

Spread is something that most traders look at when selecting a brokerage account. This is the difference between the bid and ask prices and it is how forex brokers make their money. You may be tempted to go with a company because they offer a low spread but remember that it may not be permanent and probably does not apply to all currency pairs. Spread should not be your only or even your main consideration when considering foreign exchange brokers.

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Saturday, June 20th, 2009 Brokers No Comments

Electronic Currency Trading: How It Works

Electronic currency trading is simply a way of dealing in currency exchange online. You may have seen it described as foreign exchange, forex or fx trading. It is something that appeals to many people who are looking for a way to make money on the internet using their home computer.

Forex is a little like stock trading, although the market itself is very different. You have the same aim of buying something hoping the price will rise. But with forex you are always dealing with money so you can also make money from a falling price, by exchanging out of the falling currency into a steady or rising currency.

Imagine for example that you are trading on the currency pair EUR/USD. This is a common combination for beginners. The US dollar and euro are most traded currencies and there is a lot of information available to help you, so it is a good choice to start.

With this pair you can choose to either buy or sell euros. If you place a buy order, this is called ‘going long’. You would do this if you think the euro will strengthen or rise in value (or the dollar will fall).

If you place a sell order, that is ‘going short’. You would do this if you think the dollar will strengthen (or the euro will weaken).

Your aim is to make a profit by closing the trade when the price goes the way that you anticipated. Closing the trade would involve selling euros if you had gone long, or buying them if you had gone short.

Of course, there is a risk. The price could go the wrong way, and you could make a loss. So it is important to have good information and a profitable trading system.

You do not need a lot of money to get started with electronic currency trading. Many brokers will let you begin with a couple hundred dollars, although it is better if that is not all the money that you have in the world!

Forex trading involves margins. This means that you can place orders for a lot more money than you actually have. You do this through a broker who will guarantee the balance of the order. They know you will be closing the trade at some time and if one currency is falling, another is rising. Currency values are relative, so it is not possible for all currencies to crash in the way that all stocks can crash.

Currencies can be very volatile but you can use stop losses to ensure that you do not lose more than you are willing to risk. Some brokers operate limited risk accounts where they will automatically close your trade if you lose the balance of your account. This means you do not have the dreaded margin calls which can be so disastrous for stock traders.

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Tuesday, June 9th, 2009 fx trading software, Introduction No Comments

Using The Fx Trailing Stop With MT4

The forex trailing stop is a stop that you can set in an expert advisor on the Metatrader 4 platform. It is pretty much what you might guess from the name: a stop loss that moves according to the current prices on the forex market. And a stop loss, of course, is a marker you set that will cause your MT4 expert advisor autopilot software (EA) to exit the trade when it goes against you to prevent you having any risk of a large loss.

But there are several things to be taken into account when you consider how to use the trailing stop. It is a little like a ratchet in that it can move up but not down. When you move into profit, it follows behind, moving up by the same number of pips that the market moved. But if the market falls, it stays where it is. So the market can rise and rise and you go on making more profit, but when it falls just a little way, the stop loss comes into effect and exits your trade with whatever profit or loss you made up until that point.

To give an example, you open a trade to go long. Of course at the moment of opening you are at point zero: 0 pips profit or loss. Let’s say you set your trailing stop at minus 30 pips. If you are unlucky and the forex market just falls and falls, the stop loss will kick in and close the trade for you at 30 pips down. But if the market rises, the stop loss will rise with it.

So when the market is 20 pips in your favor, your stop will have moved to 30 pips below that. If the market then falls and the price hits the stop, the EA would get you out with a loss of just 10 pips.

If the market rises to 40, the stop moves up to 10 above zero. You then have a guaranteed profit of 10 pips. In fact as soon as the market rises by the same number of pips as your trailing stop (in this case 30) you cannot lose.

Sure you could monitor the markets and operate this strategy yourself, but there is a risk of you failing to make your exit at the right moment and taking a greater loss than you planned, or having to exit a trade while the market is still rising because you have to sleep or whatever. So as long as you can leave MT4 running, an EA on autopilot relieves a lot of the pressure that would otherwise be on you in this situation.

The volatility of the market is the main factor in deciding where to set the trailing stop. You do not want to take a heavy loss but at the same time you do not want to have the stop triggered by random fluctuations in the market. A forex trailing stop that is too close to the starting price will be triggered so often that you could end up making constant small losses.

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Monday, May 18th, 2009 fx trading software No Comments