In our last lesson we finished up our discussion on the different participants in the forex market and how each can affect the market. In today’s lesson we are going to look at the major cities where foreign exchange is traded and the characteristics of each of the 8 hour trading sessions that make up the 24 hour trading day.
Unlike the futures and equities markets, the forex market trades actively 24 hours a day with active trading hours following the sun around the globe to each of the major money centers.
As the foreign exchange market is an over the counter market where two counterparties can trade with each other whenever they want, technically the market never closes. Most electronic trading platforms however open for trading at around 5 PM Eastern Time on Sunday, which corresponds to the start of Monday’s business hours in Australia and New Zealand. While there are certainly banks in these countries which actively make markets in foreign exchange, there is very little trading done in these countries when compared to other major money centers of the world.
The first major money center to open and there fore the start of the first major session in the forex market is the Asian Trading session which corresponds with the start of business hours in Tokyo at 7pm Eastern Time on Sunday.
While still considered 1 of the three major money centers, only 7.6% of forex transactions flow through Tokyo trading desks, so the Asian trading session is the least active of the three. While there is active trading in Yen based currency pairs during Asian hours the market for currencies outside of Yen based pairs is relatively thin, making Asian trading hours a time when the larger banks and hedge funds in the market will sometimes try and push the market in their favor.
Next in line is the European trading session which begins with the start of London business hours at 2 AM Eastern Standard Time. While New York is considered by most to be the largest financial center in the world, London is still king of the forex market with over 32% of all forex transactions taking place in the city. Before the Euro there were more than a dozen additional currencies in Europe making foreign exchange part of every day life for both individuals and businesses operating in the region. In addition to this, London is situated perfectly from a time zone standpoint with business hours for both the large eastern and western economies taking place during London trading hours.
As London is the most active session in the forex market it is also the session with the most volatility for all the currency pairs which we will be studying in this course.
Last but not least is the US session which begins with the start of New York business hours at 8 AM Eastern Standard Time. New York is a distant second to London in terms of forex trading volumes with approximately 19% of all forex transactions flowing through New York Dealing Rooms.
The most active part of the US Trading session, and the most active time for the forex market in general, is from about 8am to 12pm when both London and New York trading desks are open for business. You can see very large volatility during this time as in addition to both New York and London trading desks being open, most of the major US economic announcements are released during these hours as well.
The trading day winds down after 12pm New York time with most electronic platforms closing for business at around 4 PM Eastern Standard Time on Friday.
That’s our lesson for today, in our next lesson we will look at the main currencies of the world which we will be learning to trade throughout the rest of this course so we hope to see you in that lesson.
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John M. Bland, MBA co-founding Partner, Global-View.com
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The Global-View Forex Forum is the hub for currency trading on the web. Founded in 1996, it was the original forex forum and is still the place where forex traders around the globe come 24/7 looking for currency trading ideas, breaking forex news, fx trading rumors, fx flows and more. This is where you can find a full suite of forex trading tools, including a complete fx database, forex chart points, live currency rates, and live fx charts. In addition, there is a forex brokers directory where you can compare forex brokers. There is also a forex brokers hotline where you can ask for help choosing a forex broker that meets your individual fx trading needs. Interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading.
The forex forum is where traders come to discuss the forex market. It is one of the few places where forex traders of all levels of experience, from novice to professionals, interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading. There is also the GVI Forex, which is a private subscription service where professional and experienced currency traders meet in a private forex forum. it is like a virtual forex trading room. This is open to forex traders of all levels of experience to view but only experienced currency tradingprofessionals can post.
Currency trading charts are updated daily using the forex trading ranges posted in the Global-View forex database. You will also find technical indicators on the fx trading charts, e.g. moving averages for currencies such as the EURUSD. This is another forex trading tool provided by Global-View.com.
The forex database can be used to access high, low, close daily forex ranges for key currency pairs, such as the EURUSD, USDJPY, USDCHF, GBPUSD, USDCAD, AUD, NZD and major crosses, including EURJPY, EURGBP, EURCHF, GBPJPY, GBPCHF and CHFJPY. Data for these currency trading pairs dating back to January 1, 1999 can be downloaded to an Excel spreadsheet.
Forex chart points are in a currency trading table that includes; latest fx tradinghigh-low-close range, Bollinger Bands, Fibonacci retracement levels, daily forex pivot points support and resistance levels, average daily forex range, MACD for the different currency trading pairs. You can look on the forex forum for updates when one of the fx trading tools is updated.
Global-View also offers a full fx trading chart gallery that includes fx pairs, such as the EURUSD, commodities, stocks and bonds. In a fx trading world where markets are integrated, the chart gallery is a valuable trading tool. Look for updates on the Forex Forum when the chart gallery is updated.
Global-View.com also offers a forex blog, where articles of interest for currency trading are posted throughout the day. The forex blog articles come from outside sources, including forex brokers research as well as from the professionals at Global-View.com. This forex blog includes the Daily Forex View, Market Chatter and technical forex blog updates. In additional to its real time forex forum, there are also Member Forums available for more in depth forex trading discussions.
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