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About the FOREX market

FOREX is the largest and most liquid financial market in the world, referred to as the market closest to the ideal, perfect competition.

The word FOREX stands for the foreign exchange market, also known as currency or FX market.

The average daily turnover rose to $3.2 trillion in April 2007 according to the BIS's (Bank for International Settlements) survey.

Global FOREX ( foreign exchange) market turnover - Daily averages in April, in billions of US dollars
 Instrument  / Year
1992
1995
1998
2001
2004
2007
 Spot transactions  
394
494
568
386
621
1,005
 Outright forwards  
58
97
128
130
208
362
 Foreign exchange swaps  
324
546
734
656
944
1,714
 Estimated gaps in reporting  
43
53
61
28
107
129
 Total "traditional" turnover  
820
1,19
1,49
1,2
1,88
3,21
 Turnover at April 2007 exchange rates
880
1,15
1,65
1,42
1,95
3,21

FOREX is an electronic network used by banks, central banks, currency speculators (like you, if you start trading), multinational corporations, governments, and other financial markets and institutions to execute foreign exchange transactions.

The foreign exchange market is unique because of:
  • its trading volumes,
  • the extreme liquidity of the market,
  • the large number and variety of, traders in the market,
  • its geographical dispersion,
  • its long trading hours: 24 hours a day except on weekends (from 3pm EST on Sunday until 4pm EST Friday),
  • the variety of factors that affect exchange rates,
  • the low margins of profit compared with other markets of fixed income (but profits can be high due to very large trading volumes)
  • the use of leverage

 

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Please note!
Trading foreign exchange (FOREX) on margin carries a high level of risk, and may not be suitable for all investors. Before deciding to invest in foreign exchange you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite. You should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose.