GBP/USD Technical Analysis & Top Forex Trading Setups ...

H1 Backtest of ParallaxFX's BBStoch system

Disclaimer: None of this is financial advice. I have no idea what I'm doing. Please do your own research or you will certainly lose money. I'm not a statistician, data scientist, well-seasoned trader, or anything else that would qualify me to make statements such as the below with any weight behind them. Take them for the incoherent ramblings that they are.
TL;DR at the bottom for those not interested in the details.
This is a bit of a novel, sorry about that. It was mostly for getting my own thoughts organized, but if even one person reads the whole thing I will feel incredibly accomplished.

Background

For those of you not familiar, please see the various threads on this trading system here. I can't take credit for this system, all glory goes to ParallaxFX!
I wanted to see how effective this system was at H1 for a couple of reasons: 1) My current broker is TD Ameritrade - their Forex minimum is a mini lot, and I don't feel comfortable enough yet with the risk to trade mini lots on the higher timeframes(i.e. wider pip swings) that ParallaxFX's system uses, so I wanted to see if I could scale it down. 2) I'm fairly impatient, so I don't like to wait days and days with my capital tied up just to see if a trade is going to win or lose.
This does mean it requires more active attention since you are checking for setups once an hour instead of once a day or every 4-6 hours, but the upside is that you trade more often this way so you end up winning or losing faster and moving onto the next trade. Spread does eat more of the trade this way, but I'll cover this in my data below - it ends up not being a problem.
I looked at data from 6/11 to 7/3 on all pairs with a reasonable spread(pairs listed at bottom above the TL;DR). So this represents about 3-4 weeks' worth of trading. I used mark(mid) price charts. Spreadsheet link is below for anyone that's interested.

System Details

I'm pretty much using ParallaxFX's system textbook, but since there are a few options in his writeups, I'll include all the discretionary points here:

And now for the fun. Results!

As you can see, a higher target ended up with higher profit despite a much lower winrate. This is partially just how things work out with profit targets in general, but there's an additional point to consider in our case: the spread. Since we are trading on a lower timeframe, there is less overall price movement and thus the spread takes up a much larger percentage of the trade than it would if you were trading H4, Daily or Weekly charts. You can see exactly how much it accounts for each trade in my spreadsheet if you're interested. TDA does not have the best spreads, so you could probably improve these results with another broker.
EDIT: I grabbed typical spreads from other brokers, and turns out while TDA is pretty competitive on majors, their minors/crosses are awful! IG beats them by 20-40% and Oanda beats them 30-60%! Using IG spreads for calculations increased profits considerably (another 5% on top) and Oanda spreads increased profits massively (another 15%!). Definitely going to be considering another broker than TDA for this strategy. Plus that'll allow me to trade micro-lots, so I can be more granular(and thus accurate) with my position sizing and compounding.

A Note on Spread

As you can see in the data, there were scenarios where the spread was 80% of the overall size of the trade(the size of the confirmation candle that you draw your fibonacci retracements over), which would obviously cut heavily into your profits.
Removing any trades where the spread is more than 50% of the trade width improved profits slightly without removing many trades, but this is almost certainly just coincidence on a small sample size. Going below 40% and even down to 30% starts to cut out a lot of trades for the less-common pairs, but doesn't actually change overall profits at all(~1% either way).
However, digging all the way down to 25% starts to really make some movement. Profit at the -161.8% TP level jumps up to 37.94% if you filter out anything with a spread that is more than 25% of the trade width! And this even keeps the sample size fairly large at 187 total trades.
You can get your profits all the way up to 48.43% at the -161.8% TP level if you filter all the way down to only trades where spread is less than 15% of the trade width, however your sample size gets much smaller at that point(108 trades) so I'm not sure I would trust that as being accurate in the long term.
Overall based on this data, I'm going to only take trades where the spread is less than 25% of the trade width. This may bias my trades more towards the majors, which would mean a lot more correlated trades as well(more on correlation below), but I think it is a reasonable precaution regardless.

Time of Day

Time of day had an interesting effect on trades. In a totally predictable fashion, a vast majority of setups occurred during the London and New York sessions: 5am-12pm Eastern. However, there was one outlier where there were many setups on the 11PM bar - and the winrate was about the same as the big hours in the London session. No idea why this hour in particular - anyone have any insight? That's smack in the middle of the Tokyo/Sydney overlap, not at the open or close of either.
On many of the hour slices I have a feeling I'm just dealing with small number statistics here since I didn't have a lot of data when breaking it down by individual hours. But here it is anyway - for all TP levels, these three things showed up(all in Eastern time):
I don't have any reason to think these timeframes would maintain this behavior over the long term. They're almost certainly meaningless. EDIT: When you de-dup highly correlated trades, the number of trades in these timeframes really drops, so from this data there is no reason to think these timeframes would be any different than any others in terms of winrate.
That being said, these time frames work out for me pretty well because I typically sleep 12am-7am Eastern time. So I automatically avoid the 5am-6am timeframe, and I'm awake for the majority of this system's setups.

Moving stops up to breakeven

This section goes against everything I know and have ever heard about trade management. Please someone find something wrong with my data. I'd love for someone to check my formulas, but I realize that's a pretty insane time commitment to ask of a bunch of strangers.
Anyways. What I found was that for these trades moving stops up...basically at all...actually reduced the overall profitability.
One of the data points I collected while charting was where the price retraced back to after hitting a certain milestone. i.e. once the price hit the -61.8% profit level, how far back did it retrace before hitting the -100% profit level(if at all)? And same goes for the -100% profit level - how far back did it retrace before hitting the -161.8% profit level(if at all)?
Well, some complex excel formulas later and here's what the results appear to be. Emphasis on appears because I honestly don't believe it. I must have done something wrong here, but I've gone over it a hundred times and I can't find anything out of place.
Now, you might think exactly what I did when looking at these numbers: oof, the spread killed us there right? Because even when you move your SL to 0%, you still end up paying the spread, so it's not truly "breakeven". And because we are trading on a lower timeframe, the spread can be pretty hefty right?
Well even when I manually modified the data so that the spread wasn't subtracted(i.e. "Breakeven" was truly +/- 0), things don't look a whole lot better, and still way worse than the passive trade management method of leaving your stops in place and letting it run. And that isn't even a realistic scenario because to adjust out the spread you'd have to move your stoploss inside the candle edge by at least the spread amount, meaning it would almost certainly be triggered more often than in the data I collected(which was purely based on the fib levels and mark price). Regardless, here are the numbers for that scenario:
From a literal standpoint, what I see behind this behavior is that 44 of the 69 breakeven trades(65%!) ended up being profitable to -100% after retracing deeply(but not to the original SL level), which greatly helped offset the purely losing trades better than the partial profit taken at -61.8%. And 36 went all the way back to -161.8% after a deep retracement without hitting the original SL. Anyone have any insight into this? Is this a problem with just not enough data? It seems like enough trades that a pattern should emerge, but again I'm no expert.
I also briefly looked at moving stops to other lower levels (78.6%, 61.8%, 50%, 38.2%, 23.6%), but that didn't improve things any. No hard data to share as I only took a quick look - and I still might have done something wrong overall.
The data is there to infer other strategies if anyone would like to dig in deep(more explanation on the spreadsheet below). I didn't do other combinations because the formulas got pretty complicated and I had already answered all the questions I was looking to answer.

2-Candle vs Confirmation Candle Stops

Another interesting point is that the original system has the SL level(for stop entries) just at the outer edge of the 2-candle pattern that makes up the system. Out of pure laziness, I set up my stops just based on the confirmation candle. And as it turns out, that is much a much better way to go about it.
Of the 60 purely losing trades, only 9 of them(15%) would go on to be winners with stops on the 2-candle formation. Certainly not enough to justify the extra loss and/or reduced profits you are exposing yourself to in every single other trade by setting a wider SL.
Oddly, in every single scenario where the wider stop did save the trade, it ended up going all the way to the -161.8% profit level. Still, not nearly worth it.

Correlated Trades

As I've said many times now, I'm really not qualified to be doing an analysis like this. This section in particular.
Looking at shared currency among the pairs traded, 74 of the trades are correlated. Quite a large group, but it makes sense considering the sort of moves we're looking for with this system.
This means you are opening yourself up to more risk if you were to trade on every signal since you are technically trading with the same underlying sentiment on each different pair. For example, GBP/USD and AUD/USD moving together almost certainly means it's due to USD moving both pairs, rather than GBP and AUD both moving the same size and direction coincidentally at the same time. So if you were to trade both signals, you would very likely win or lose both trades - meaning you are actually risking double what you'd normally risk(unless you halve both positions which can be a good option, and is discussed in ParallaxFX's posts and in various other places that go over pair correlation. I won't go into detail about those strategies here).
Interestingly though, 17 of those apparently correlated trades ended up with different wins/losses.
Also, looking only at trades that were correlated, winrate is 83%/70%/55% (for the three TP levels).
Does this give some indication that the same signal on multiple pairs means the signal is stronger? That there's some strong underlying sentiment driving it? Or is it just a matter of too small a sample size? The winrate isn't really much higher than the overall winrates, so that makes me doubt it is statistically significant.
One more funny tidbit: EUCAD netted the lowest overall winrate: 30% to even the -61.8% TP level on 10 trades. Seems like that is just a coincidence and not enough data, but dang that's a sucky losing streak.
EDIT: WOW I spent some time removing correlated trades manually and it changed the results quite a bit. Some thoughts on this below the results. These numbers also include the other "What I will trade" filters. I added a new worksheet to my data to show what I ended up picking.
To do this, I removed correlated trades - typically by choosing those whose spread had a lower % of the trade width since that's objective and something I can see ahead of time. Obviously I'd like to only keep the winning trades, but I won't know that during the trade. This did reduce the overall sample size down to a level that I wouldn't otherwise consider to be big enough, but since the results are generally consistent with the overall dataset, I'm not going to worry about it too much.
I may also use more discretionary methods(support/resistance, quality of indecision/confirmation candles, news/sentiment for the pairs involved, etc) to filter out correlated trades in the future. But as I've said before I'm going for a pretty mechanical system.
This brought the 3 TP levels and even the breakeven strategies much closer together in overall profit. It muted the profit from the high R:R strategies and boosted the profit from the low R:R strategies. This tells me pair correlation was skewing my data quite a bit, so I'm glad I dug in a little deeper. Fortunately my original conclusion to use the -161.8 TP level with static stops is still the winner by a good bit, so it doesn't end up changing my actions.
There were a few times where MANY (6-8) correlated pairs all came up at the same time, so it'd be a crapshoot to an extent. And the data showed this - often then won/lost together, but sometimes they did not. As an arbitrary rule, the more correlations, the more trades I did end up taking(and thus risking). For example if there were 3-5 correlations, I might take the 2 "best" trades given my criteria above. 5+ setups and I might take the best 3 trades, even if the pairs are somewhat correlated.
I have no true data to back this up, but to illustrate using one example: if AUD/JPY, AUD/USD, CAD/JPY, USD/CAD all set up at the same time (as they did, along with a few other pairs on 6/19/20 9:00 AM), can you really say that those are all the same underlying movement? There are correlations between the different correlations, and trying to filter for that seems rough. Although maybe this is a known thing, I'm still pretty green to Forex - someone please enlighten me if so! I might have to look into this more statistically, but it would be pretty complex to analyze quantitatively, so for now I'm going with my gut and just taking a few of the "best" trades out of the handful.
Overall, I'm really glad I went further on this. The boosting of the B/E strategies makes me trust my calculations on those more since they aren't so far from the passive management like they were with the raw data, and that really had me wondering what I did wrong.

What I will trade

Putting all this together, I am going to attempt to trade the following(demo for a bit to make sure I have the hang of it, then for keeps):
Looking at the data for these rules, test results are:
I'll be sure to let everyone know how it goes!

Other Technical Details

Raw Data

Here's the spreadsheet for anyone that'd like it. (EDIT: Updated some of the setups from the last few days that have fully played out now. I also noticed a few typos, but nothing major that would change the overall outcomes. Regardless, I am currently reviewing every trade to ensure they are accurate.UPDATE: Finally all done. Very few corrections, no change to results.)
I have some explanatory notes below to help everyone else understand the spiraled labyrinth of a mind that put the spreadsheet together.

Insanely detailed spreadsheet notes

For you real nerds out there. Here's an explanation of what each column means:

Pairs

  1. AUD/CAD
  2. AUD/CHF
  3. AUD/JPY
  4. AUD/NZD
  5. AUD/USD
  6. CAD/CHF
  7. CAD/JPY
  8. CHF/JPY
  9. EUAUD
  10. EUCAD
  11. EUCHF
  12. EUGBP
  13. EUJPY
  14. EUNZD
  15. EUUSD
  16. GBP/AUD
  17. GBP/CAD
  18. GBP/CHF
  19. GBP/JPY
  20. GBP/NZD
  21. GBP/USD
  22. NZD/CAD
  23. NZD/CHF
  24. NZD/JPY
  25. NZD/USD
  26. USD/CAD
  27. USD/CHF
  28. USD/JPY

TL;DR

Based on the reasonable rules I discovered in this backtest:

Demo Trading Results

Since this post, I started demo trading this system assuming a 5k capital base and risking ~1% per trade. I've added the details to my spreadsheet for anyone interested. The results are pretty similar to the backtest when you consider real-life conditions/timing are a bit different. I missed some trades due to life(work, out of the house, etc), so that brought my total # of trades and thus overall profit down, but the winrate is nearly identical. I also closed a few trades early due to various reasons(not liking the price action, seeing support/resistance emerge, etc).
A quick note is that TD's paper trade system fills at the mid price for both stop and limit orders, so I had to subtract the spread from the raw trade values to get the true profit/loss amount for each trade.
I'm heading out of town next week, then after that it'll be time to take this sucker live!

Live Trading Results

I started live-trading this system on 8/10, and almost immediately had a string of losses much longer than either my backtest or demo period. Murphy's law huh? Anyways, that has me spooked so I'm doing a longer backtest before I start risking more real money. It's going to take me a little while due to the volume of trades, but I'll likely make a new post once I feel comfortable with that and start live trading again.
submitted by ForexBorex to Forex [link] [comments]

I am a professional Day Trader working for a Prop Fund, Hope I can help people out and answer some questions

Howdy all, I work professionally for a proprietary trading fund, and have worked for quite a few in my time, hope I can offer some insights on trading etc you guys might have.
Bonus for you guys
Here are the columns in my trading journal and various explanations where appropriate:
Trade Number – Simply is this the first trade of the year? The 10th?, The 50th? I count a trade
that you opened and closed just one trade number. For example if you buy EUUSD today and
sell it 50 pips later in the day and close out the trade, then that is just one trade for recording
purposes. I do not create a second trade number to describe the exit. Both the entry and exit are
under the same trade number.


Ticket Number – This is ticket number / order ID number that your broker gives you for the trade
on your platform.


Day of the Week – This would be simply the day of the week the trade was initiated


Financial Instrument / Currency Pair – Whatever Financial Instrument or currency pair you are
trading. If you are trading EUUSD, put EUUSD. If you are trading the EuroFX futures
contract, then put in Euro FX. If you are trading the emini S&P, then put in Emini S&P 500. If
you are trading a stock, put in the ticker symbol. Etc.


Buy/Sell or Long/Short – Did you buy or sell to open the new trade? If you bought something to
open the trade, then write in either BUY or LONG. If you sold(shorted) something to open a
trade, then write in SOLD, or SHORT. This is a personal preference. Some people like to put in
their journals as BUY/SELL. Other people like to write in Long/Short. My preference is for
writing in long/short, since that is the more professional way to say it. I like to use the lingo
where possible.


Order Type – Market or Limit – When you entered the trade was it a market order or limit order?
Some people can enter a trade using a combination of market and limit orders. If you enter a
trade for $1 million half of which was market order and the other half was limit order, then you
can write in $500,000 Market, $500,000 Limit as a bullet points.


Position Size / Units / Contracts / Shares – How big was the total trade you entered? If you
bought 1 standard lot of a currency pair, then write in $100,000 or 1 standard lot. If you bought 5
gold futures contracts, then write in 5 contracts. If you bought 1,000 shares of stock, then write
in 1,000 shares. Etc.


Entry Price – The entry price you received entering your opening position. If you entered at
multiple prices, then you can either write in all the different fills you got, or specify the average
price received.


Entry Date – Date that you entered the position. For example January 23, 2012. Or you can
write in 1/23/12

.
Entry Time – Time that you opened the position. If it is multiple positions, then you can specify
each time for each various fill, or you can specify the time range. For example if you got
$100,000 worth of EUUSD filled at 3:00 AM EST, and another $100,000 filled at 3:05 and
another $100,000 filled at 3:25, then you can write all those in, or you can specify a range of 3:00
– 3:30 AM EST.


Entry Spread Cost (in pips) – This is optional if you want to keep track of your spread cost in
pips. If you executed a market order, how many pips did you pay in spread.


Entry Spread Cost (in dollars) – This is optional if you want to keep track of your spread cost in
dollars. If you executed a market order, how many dollars did you pay in spread.


Stop Loss Size – How big is your stop loss size? If you are trading a currency pair, then you
write in the pips. If you are trading the S&P futures contract, then write in the number of points.
If you are trading a stock, then write in how many cents or dollars your stop is away from your
entry price.


% Risk – If you were to get stopped out of the trade, how much % loss of your equity is that?
This is where you input your risk per trade expressed in % terms if you use such a position sizing
method. If you risked 0.50% of your account on the trade, then put in 0.50%


Risk in dollars – If you were to get stopped out of the trade, how much loss in dollars is that. For
example if you have a $100,000 account and you risked 1% on a trade, then write in $1,000
dollars


Potential Reward: Risk Ratio – This is a column that I only sometimes fill in. You write in what
the potential reward risk ratio of the trade is. If you are trading using a 100 pip stop and you
expect that the market can reasonably move 300 pips, then you can write in 3:1. Of course this is
an interesting column because you can look at it after the trade is finished and see how close you
were or how far removed from reality your initial projections were.


Potential Win Rate – This is another column that I only sometimes fill in. You write in what you
believe the potential win rate of this trade is. If you were to place this trade 10 times in a row,
how many times do you think you would win? I write it in as percentage terms. If you believe
the trade has a 50% chance to win, then write in 50%.


Type of Inefficiency – This is where you write in what type of inefficiency you are looking to
capture. I use the word inefficiency here. I believe it is important to think of trading setups as
inefficiencies. If you think in terms of inefficiencies, then you will think in terms of the market
being mispriced, then you will think about the reasons why the market is mispriced and why such
market expectations for example are out of alignment with reality. In this category I could write
in different types of trades such as fading the stops, different types of news trades, expecting
stops to get tripped, betting on sentiment intensifying, betting on sentiment reversing, etc. I do
not write in all the reasons why I took the trade in this column. I do that in another column. This
column is just to broadly define what type of inefficiency you are looking to capture.


Chart Time Frame – I do not use this since all my order flow based trades have nothing to do
with what chart time frame I look at. However, if you are a chartist or price action trader, then
you may want to include what chart time frame you found whatever pattern you were looking at.


Exit Price – When you exit your trade, you enter the price you received here.


Exit Date – The date you exited your trade.


Exit Time – The time you exited your trade.


Trade Duration – In hours, minutes, days or weeks. If the trade lasts less than an hour, I will
usually write in the duration in minutes. Anything in between 1 and 48 hours, I write in the hours
amount. Anything past that and I write it as days or weeks as appropriate, etc.
Pips the trade went against you before turning into a winner – If you have a trade that suffered a
draw down, but did not stop you out and eventually was a winner, then you write it how many
pips the trade went against you before it turned into a profitable trade. The reason you have this
column is to compare it to your stop loss size and see any patterns that emerge. If you notice that
a lot of your winning trades suffer a big draw down and get near your stop loss points but turn out
to be a profitable trade, then you can further refine your entry strategy to get in a better price.


Slippage on the Exit – If you get stopped out for a loss, then you write in how many pips you
suffered as slippage, if any. For example if you are long EUUSD at 1.2500 and have your stop
loss at 1.2400 and the market drops and you get filled at 1.2398, then you would write in -2 pips
slippage. In other words you lost 2 pips as slippage. This is important for a few different
reasons. Firstly, you want to see if the places you put your stop at suffer from slippage. If they
do, perhaps you can get better stop loss placement, or use it as useful information to find new
inefficiencies. Secondly, you want to see how much slippage your broker is giving you. If you
are trading the same system with different brokers, then you can record the slippage from each
one and see which has the lowest slippage so you can choose them.


Profit/Loss -You write in the profit and/or loss in pips, cents, points, etc as appropriate. If you
bought EUUSD at 1.2500 and sell it at 1.2550, you made 50 pips, so write in +50 pips. If you
bought a stock at $50 and you sell it at $60, then write in +$10. If you buy the S&P futures at
1,250 and sell them at 1,275, then write in +25 points. If you buy the GBP/USD at 1.5000 and
you sell it at 1.4900, then write in -100 pips. Etc. I color code the box background to green for
profit and red for loss.


Profit/Loss In Dollars – You write the profit and/or loss in dollars (or euros, or jpy, etc whatever
currency your account is denominated in). If you are long $100,000 of EUUSD at 1.2500 and
sell it at 1.2600, then write in +$1,000. If you are short $100,000 GBP/USD at 1.5900 and it
rises to 1.6000 and you cover, then write in -$1,000. I color code the box background to green
for profit and red for loss.


Profit/Loss as % of your account – Write in the profit and/or loss as % of your account. If a trade
made you 2% of your account, then write in +2%. If a trade lost 0.50%, then write in -0.50%. I
color code the box background to green for profit and red for loss.


Reward:Risk Ratio or R multiple: If the trade is a profit, then write in how many times your risk
did it pay off. If you risked 0.50% and you made 1.00%, then write in +2R or 2:1 or 2.0. If you
risked 0.50% and a trade only makes 0.10%, then write in +0.20R or 0.2:1 or 0.2. If a trade went
for a loss that is equal to or less than what you risked, then I do not write in anything. If the loss
is greater than the amount you risked, then I do write it in this column. For example lets say you
risk 0.50% on a stock, but overnight the market gaps and you lose 1.50% on a trade, then I would
write it in as a -3R.


What Type of trading loss if the trade lost money? – This is where I describe in very general
terms a trade if it lost money. For example, if I lost money on a trade and the reason was because
I was buying in a market that was making fresh lows, but after I bought the market kept on going
lower, then I would write in: “trying to pick a bottom.” If I tried shorting into a rising uptrend
and I take a loss, then I describe it as “trying to pick a top.” If I am buying in an uptrend and buy
on a retracement, but the market makes a deeper retracement or trend change, then I write in
“tried to buy a ret.” And so on and so forth. In very general terms I describe it. The various
ways I use are:
• Trying to pick a bottom
• Trying to pick a top
• Shorting a bottom
• Buying a top
• Shorting a ret and failed
• Wrongly predicted news
• Bought a ret and failed
• Fade a resistance level
• Buy a support level
• Tried to buy a breakout higher
• Tried to short a breakout lower
I find this category very interesting and important because when performing trade journal
analysis, you can notice trends when you have winners or losing trades. For example if I notice a
string of losing trades and I notice that all of them occur in the same market, and all of them have
as a reason: “tried to pick a bottom”, then I know I was dumb for trying to pick a bottom five
times in a row. I was fighting the macro order flow and it was dumb. Or if I notice a string of
losers and see that I tried to buy a breakout and it failed five times in a row, but notice that the
market continued to go higher after I was stopped out, then I realize that I was correct in the
move, but I just applied the wrong entry strategy. I should have bought a retracement, instead of
trying to buy a fresh breakout.


That Day’s Weaknesses (If any) – This is where I write in if there were any weaknesses or
distractions on the day I placed the trade. For example if you are dead tired and place a trade,
then write in that you were very tired. Or if you place a trade when there were five people
coming and out of your trading office or room in your house, then write that in. If you placed the
trade when the fire alarm was going off then write that in. Or if you place a trade without having
done your daily habits, then write that in. Etc. Whatever you believe was a possible weakness
that threw you off your game.


That Day’s Strengths (If any) – Here you can write in what strengths you had during the day you
placed your trade. If you had complete peace and quiet, write that in. If you completed all your
daily habits, then write that in. Etc. Whatever you believe was a possible strength during the
day.


How many Open Positions Total (including the one you just placed) – How many open trades do
you have after placing this one? If you have zero open trades and you just placed one, then the
total number of open positions would be one, so write in “1.” If you have on three open trades,
and you are placing a new current one, then the total number of open positions would be four, so
write in “4.” The reason you have this column in your trading journal is so that you can notice
trends in winning and losing streaks. Do a lot of your losing streaks happen when you have on a
lot of open positions at the same time? Do you have a winning streak when the number of open
positions is kept low? Or can you handle a lot of open positions at the same time?


Exit Spread Cost (in pips) – This is optional if you want to keep track of your spread cost in pips.
If you executed a market order, how many pips did you pay in spread.


Exit Spread Cost (in dollars) – This is optional if you want to keep track of your spread cost in
dollars. If you executed a market order, how many dollars did you pay in spread.


Total Spread Cost (in pips) – You write in the total spread cost of the entry and exit in pips.


Total Spread Cost (in dollars) – You write in the total spread cost of the entry and exit in dollars.


Commission Cost – Here you write in the total commission cost that you incurred for getting in
and out of the trade. If you have a forex broker that is commission free and only gets
compensated through the spread, then you do not need this column.


Starting Balance – The starting account balance that you had prior to the placing of the trade


Interest/swap – If you hold forex currency pairs past the rollover, then you either get interest or
need to pay out interest depending on the rollover rates. Or if you bought a stock and got a
dividend then write that in. Or if you shorted a stock and you had to pay a dividend, then write
that in.


Ending Balance – The ending balance of your account after the trade is closed after taking into
account trade P&L, commission cost, and interest/swap.


Reasons for taking the trade – Here is where you go into much more detail about why you placed
the trade. Write out your thinking. Instead of writing a paragraph or two describing my thinking
behind the trade, I condense the reasons down into bullet points. It can be anywhere from 1-10
bullet points.


What I Learned – No matter if the trade is a win or loss, write down what you believed you
learned. Again, instead of writing out a paragraph or two, I condense it down into bullet points. it
can be anywhere from 1-10 bullet points. I do this during the day the trade closed as a profit or
loss.


What I learned after Long Term reflection, several days, weeks, or months – This is the very
interesting column. This is important because after you have a winning or losing trade, you will
not always know the true reasons why it happened. You have your immediate theories and
reasons which you include in the previous column. However, there are times when after several
days, weeks, or months, you find the true reason and proper market belief about why your trade
succeeded or failed. It can take a few days or weeks or months to reach that “aha” moment. I am
not saying that I am thinking about trades I placed ten months ago. I try to forget about them and
focus on the present moment. However, there will be trades where you have these nagging
questions about they failed or succeeded and you will only discover those reasons several days,
weeks, or months later. When you discover the reasons, you write them in this column.
submitted by Fox-The-Wise to Forex [link] [comments]

Preparing for the Impulse: The Japanese Yen Surge

Preparing for the Impulse: The Japanese Yen Surge
See first: https://www.reddit.com/Forex/comments/clx0v9/profiting_in_trends_planning_for_the_impulsive/

Against it's major counterparts, the JPY has been showing a lot of strength. It's now getting into areas where it is threatening breakouts of decade long support and resistance levels.

Opportunity for us as traders if this happens is abundant. We've not seen trading conditions like this for over 10 years on this currency, and back then it was a hell of a show! In this post I'll discuss this, and my plans to trade it.

I'm going to focus on one currency pair, although I do think this same sort of move will be reflected across most of the XXXJPY pairs. The pair I will be using is GBPJPY. I like the volatility in this pair, and along with the JPY looking continually strong and there being uncertainty in the GBP with possible Brexit related issues, this seems like an ideal target for planning to trade a strong move up in the JPY.

The Big Overview

I'll start by drawing your attention to something a lot of you will have probably not been aware of. GBPJPY has always been in a downtrend. All this stuff happening day to day, week to week and month to month has always fitted into an overall larger downtrend. In the context of that downtrend, there have been no surprises in the price moves GBPJPY has made. This is not true of the real world events that drove these moves. Things like market crashes, bubbles and Brexit.

https://preview.redd.it/5gfhwxcy6wj31.png?width=663&format=png&auto=webp&s=4d4806dee84a7bbe073e08d153da946222893eeb

Source: https://www.poundsterlinglive.com/bank-of-england-spot/historical-spot-exchange-rates/gbp/GBP-to-JPY

I know this has been largely sideways for a long time, but it is valid to say this is a downtrend. The highs are getting lower, and the lows have been getting lower (last low after the Brexit fall and following 'flash crash' some weeks later).
This is important to understand, because it's going to help a lot when we look at what has happened over the last 5 - 10 years in this pair, and what it tells us might be about to happen in the coming few months and year to come. If the same pattern continues, a well designed and executed trade plan can make life changing money for the person who does that. I hope those of you who take the time to check the things I say here understand that is very feasible.

The last Decade


In the same way I've shown you how we can understand when a trend has corrective weeks and see certain sorts of price structure in that, from 2012 to 2015 GBPJPY had a corrective half decade. In the context of large price moves over decades, this was a sharp correction. I've discussed at length in my posts how sharp corrections can then lead into impulse legs.

https://preview.redd.it/kvnrqau07wj31.png?width=675&format=png&auto=webp&s=8e96f02a189a811d511ef7946037fd670d106b1b
I've explained though my posts and real time analysis and trades in the short term how in an impulse leg we would expect to see a strong move in line with the trend, then it stalling for a while. Choppy range. Then there being a big spike out move of that range. Making dramatic new lows. Then we'd enter into another corrective cycle (I've been showing you weeks, it's more practical. We'll be looking at the same thing scaled out over longer, that's all).

At this point, we can say the following things which are all non-subjective.
  • GBPJPY has always been in a downtrend.
  • A clear high after a strong rally was made in 2016
  • Since then, GBPJPY has downtrended
5 year chart confirms the latter two points.

https://preview.redd.it/a44rzzs47wj31.png?width=686&format=png&auto=webp&s=43fbebe933fa80d1c24a1f8fde2c08653d125d18

These are interesting facts. We can do a lot of with this information to understand where we may really be in the overall context of what this pair is doing.

The Clear Trend Cycle of the Last 5 Years


If we were to use the Elliot Wave theory, based on the above data we have we'd expect to see down trending formations on the weekly chart over the last 5 years. These would form is three distinct trend legs, each having a corrective pattern after. We would expect to see after that a strong correction (corrective year in down trending 5 year cycle), it stop at the 61.8% fib and then resume a down trend. The down trend would form similarly in three main moves.

https://preview.redd.it/ghvgzr577wj31.png?width=663&format=png&auto=webp&s=caeedc4f48ab3b4d1ed921ef519a33200db62868

Whether or not you believe Elliot Wave theory is any good or not, this is what it would predict. If you gave someone who knew about Elliot trading the facts we've established - they'd make this prediction. So let's see how that would look on the GBPJPY chart. I'm having problems with my cTrader platform today, so will have to use MT4 charting.


These are three distinct swings from a high to a low. It also fits all the other Elliot rules about swing formation (which I won't cover, but you can Google and learn if you'd like to). We then go into a period of correction. GBPJPY rallies for a year.
This corrective year does not look very different from a corrective week. Which I've shown how we can understand and trade though various different posts.

https://preview.redd.it/m9ga8pp97wj31.png?width=590&format=png&auto=webp&s=6ed069207b8297c0ab67d6608206b57a1b354fef
Source: https://www.reddit.com/Forex/comments/cwwe34/common_trading_mistakes_how_trend_strategies_lose/

Compare the charts, there is nothing different. It's not because I've copied this chart, it is just what a trend and correction looks like. I've shown this is not curve fitting by forecasting these corrective weeks and telling you all my trades in them (very high success rate).

What about the retrace level?
When we draw fibs from the shoulders high (which is where the resistance was, there was a false breakout of it giving an ever so slightly higher high), it's uncanny how price reacted to this level.

https://preview.redd.it/68pa0bgc7wj31.png?width=667&format=png&auto=webp&s=8f78ce2c11f267f32dacd17c8717dcfa1f8bcb6a
This is exactly what the theory would predict. I hope even those sceptical about Elliot theory can agree this looks like three trend moves with corrections, a big correction and then a top at 61.8%. Which is everything the starting data would predict if the theory was valid and in action.

Assumptions and Planning


To this point, I've made no assumptions. This is a reporting/highlighting of facts on historical data of this pair. Now I am going to make some assumptions to use them to prepare a trade plan. These will be;

  • This is an Elliot formation, and will continue to be.
  • Since it is, this leg will have symmetry to the previous leg.

I'll use the latter to confirm the former. I'll use a projection of what it'd look like if it was similar to the previous move. I'll put in my markers, and look for things to confirm or deny it. There'll be ways to both suggest I am right, and suggest I am wrong. For as long as nothing that obviously invalidates these assumptions happens in the future price action, I'll continue to assume them to be accurate.

Charting Up for Forecasts

The first thing I have do here is get some markers. What I want to do is see if there is a consistency in price interactions on certain fib levels (this is using different methods from what I've previously discussed in my posts, to avoid confusion for those who follow my stuff). I am going to draw extension swings and these will give level forecasts. I have strategies based upon this, and I'm looking for action to be consistent with these, and also duplicated in the big swings down.
I need to be very careful with how I draw my fibs. Since I can see what happened in the chart, it obviously gives me some bias to curve fit to that. This does not suit my objective. Making it fit will not help give foresight. So I need to look for ways to draw the fib on the exact same part of the swing in both of the moves.

https://preview.redd.it/d5qwm8vg7wj31.png?width=662&format=png&auto=webp&s=ad2deba557f9f6d8a0fe06d34cbe3307e7cccc24

These two parts of price moves look like very similar expressions of each other to me. There is the consolidation at the low, and then a big breakout. Looking closer at the top, both of them make false breakouts low before making a top. So I am going to use these swings to draw my fibs on, from the low to the high. What I will be looking for as specific markers is the price reaction to the 1.61% level (highly important fib).
A strategy I have designed around this would look for price to stall at this level, bounce a bit and then make a big breakout and strong trend. This would continue into the 2.20 and 2.61 extension levels. So I'm interested to see if that matches in.

https://preview.redd.it/mpoqz4aj7wj31.png?width=663&format=png&auto=webp&s=710d72120085c1e137c800f57a36f910f78eebcb
Very similar price moves are seen in the area where price traded through the 1.61 level. The breakout strategy here predicts a retracement and then another sell to new lows.
On the left swing, we made a retracement and now test lows. On the right swing, we've got to the point of testing the lows here. This is making this level very important. The breakout strategy here would predict a swing to 61 is price breaks these lows. This might sound unlikely, but this signal would have been flagged as possible back in 2008. It would require the certain criteria I've explained here, and all of this has appeared on the chart since then. This gives me many reasons to suspect a big sell is coming.

On to the next assumption. For this fall to happen in a strong style like all of these are suggesting, it'd have to be one hell of a move. Elliot wave theory would predict this, if it was wave 3 move, these are the strongest. From these I'm going to form a hypothesis and then see if I can find evidence for or against it. I am going to take the hypothesis that where we are in this current GBPJPY chart is going to late come to been seen in a larger context as this.

https://preview.redd.it/tkfzja5n7wj31.png?width=661&format=png&auto=webp&s=47fc014619a61728f16e1527e729b82edad6b94e

This hypothesis would have the Brexit lows and correction from this being the same as the small bounce up before this market capitulated. This would forecast there being a break in this pair to the downside, and that then being followed by multiple sustained strong falls. I know this looks insanely big ... but this is not much in the context of the theme of the last 50 years. This sort of thing has always been what happened when we made this breakout.

Since I have my breakout strategy forecasting 61, I check for confluence of anything that may also give that area as a forecast. I'm looking for symmetry, so I take the ratio of the size of the first big fall on the left to the ratio of when it all out crashed. These legs are close to 50% more (bit more, this is easy math). The low to high of the recent swing would be 7,500 pips. So this would forecast 11,000.
When you take that away from the high of 156, it comes in very close to 61. Certainly close enough to be considered within the margin of error this strategy has for forecasting.

I will be posting a lot more detailed trade plans that this. Dealing specific levels to plan to engage the market, stop trailing and taking profit. I'll also quite actively track my trades I am making to enter into the market for this move. This post is to get the broad strokes of why I'm looking for this trade in place, and to help you to have proper context by what I mean when you hear me talking about big sells on this pair and other XXXJPY pairs.
submitted by whatthefx to Forex [link] [comments]

Preparing for the Impulse: The Japanese Yen Surge

Preparing for the Impulse: The Japanese Yen Surge
Against it's major counterparts, the JPY has been showing a lot of strength. It's now getting into areas where it is threatening breakouts of decade long support and resistance levels.

Opportunity for us as traders if this happens is abundant. We've not seen trading conditions like this for over 10 years on this currency, and back then it was a hell of a show! In this post I'll discuss this, and my plans to trade it.

I'm going to focus on one currency pair, although I do think this same sort of move will be reflected across most of the XXXJPY pairs. The pair I will be using is GBPJPY. I like the volatility in this pair, and along with the JPY looking continually strong and there being uncertainty in the GBP with possible Brexit related issues, this seems like an ideal target for planning to trade a strong move up in the JPY.

The Big Overview

I'll start by drawing your attention to something a lot of you will have probably not been aware of. GBPJPY has always been in a downtrend. All this stuff happening day to day, week to week and month to month has always fitted into an overall larger downtrend. In the context of that downtrend, there have been no surprises in the price moves GBPJPY has made. This is not true of the real world events that drove these moves. Things like market crashes, bubbles and Brexit.

https://preview.redd.it/9r6rnqo4rvj31.png?width=1258&format=png&auto=webp&s=738602a2157e08c3f9ec6c588ae603edb5b71a36
Source: https://www.poundsterlinglive.com/bank-of-england-spot/historical-spot-exchange-rates/gbp/GBP-to-JPY

I know this has been largely sideways for a long time, but it is valid to say this is a downtrend. The highs are getting lower, and the lows have been getting lower (last low after the Brexit fall and following 'flash crash' some weeks later).
This is important to understand, because it's going to help a lot when we look at what has happened over the last 5 - 10 years in this pair, and what it tells us might be about to happen in the coming few months and year to come. If the same pattern continues, a well designed and executed trade plan can make life changing money for the person who does that. I hope those of you who take the time to check the things I say here understand that is very feasible.

The last Decade


In the same way I've shown you how we can understand when a trend has corrective weeks and see certain sorts of price structure in that, from 2012 to 2015 GBPJPY had a corrective half decade. In the context of large price moves over decades, this was a sharp correction. I've discussed at length in my posts how sharp corrections can then lead into impulse legs.
https://preview.redd.it/j5q3jrtvsvj31.png?width=1269&format=png&auto=webp&s=a76fdb3de6e943234352f4b9832483c35e082a4b
I've explained though my posts and real time analysis and trades in the short term how in an impulse leg we would expect to see a strong move in line with the trend, then it stalling for a while. Choppy range. Then there being a big spike out move of that range. Making dramatic new lows. Then we'd enter into another corrective cycle (I've been showing you weeks, it's more practical. We'll be looking at the same thing scaled out over longer, that's all).

At this point, we can say the following things which are all non-subjective.
  • GBPJPY has always been in a downtrend.
  • A clear high after a strong rally was made in 2016
  • Since then, GBPJPY has downtrended
5 year chart confirms the latter two points.

https://preview.redd.it/ac1kjwr1uvj31.png?width=1249&format=png&auto=webp&s=f94861cab758119231fff168233bebac832cf456

These are interesting facts. We can do a lot of with this information to understand where we may really be in the overall context of what this pair is doing.

The Clear Trend Cycle of the Last 5 Years


If we were to use the Elliot Wave theory, based on the above data we have we'd expect to see down trending formations on the weekly chart over the last 5 years. These would form is three distinct trend legs, each having a corrective pattern after. We would expect to see after that a strong correction (corrective year in down trending 5 year cycle), it stop at the 61.8% fib and then resume a down trend. The down trend would form similarly in three main moves.

Whether or not you believe Elliot Wave theory is any good or not, this is what it would predict. If you gave someone who knew about Elliot trading the facts we've established - they'd make this prediction. So let's see how that would look on the GBPJPY chart. I'm having problems with my cTrader platform today, so will have to use MT4 charting.


https://preview.redd.it/s8vguiimvvj31.png?width=823&format=png&auto=webp&s=96d023db99041c9ba91f61ab87d3bd48de8da514
These are three distinct swings from a high to a low. It also fits all the other Elliot rules about swing formation (which I won't cover, but you can Google and learn if you'd like to). We then go into a period of correction. GBPJPY rallies for a year.
This corrective year does not look very different from a corrective week. Which I've shown how we can understand and trade though various different posts.
https://preview.redd.it/yowdmil6wvj31.png?width=733&format=png&auto=webp&s=bad142803823e6a7f8af56ef63ebebc574210c4b
Source: https://www.reddit.com/Forex/comments/cwwe34/common_trading_mistakes_how_trend_strategies_lose/

Compare the charts, there is nothing different. It's not because I've copied this chart, it is just what a trend and correction looks like. I've shown this is not curve fitting by forecasting these corrective weeks and telling you all my trades in them (very high success rate).

What about the retrace level?
When we draw fibs from the shoulders high (which is where the resistance was, there was a false breakout of it giving an ever so slightly higher high), it's uncanny how price reacted to this level.
https://preview.redd.it/axvtd22wwvj31.png?width=822&format=png&auto=webp&s=518f309232552ea33921e939b08d2bf28ba76f0b
This is exactly what the theory would predict. I hope even those sceptical about Elliot theory can agree this looks like three trend moves with corrections, a big correction and then a top at 61.8%. Which is everything the starting data would predict if the theory was valid and in action.

Assumptions and Planning


To this point, I've made no assumptions. This is a reporting/highlighting of facts on historical data of this pair. Now I am going to make some assumptions to use them to prepare a trade plan. These will be;

  • This is an Elliot formation, and will continue to be.
  • Since it is, this leg will have symmetry to the previous leg.

I'll use the latter to confirm the former. I'll use a projection of what it'd look like if it was similar to the previous move. I'll put in my markers, and look for things to confirm or deny it. There'll be ways to both suggest I am right, and suggest I am wrong. For as long as nothing that obviously invalidates these assumptions happens in the future price action, I'll continue to assume them to be accurate.

Charting Up for Forecasts

The first thing I have do here is get some markers. What I want to do is see if there is a consistency in price interactions on certain fib levels (this is using different methods from what I've previously discussed in my posts, to avoid confusion for those who follow my stuff). I am going to draw extension swings and these will give level forecasts. I have strategies based upon this, and I'm looking for action to be consistent with these, and also duplicated in the big swings down.
I need to be very careful with how I draw my fibs. Since I can see what happened in the chart, it obviously gives me some bias to curve fit to that. This does not suit my objective. Making it fit will not help give foresight. So I need to look for ways to draw the fib on the exact same part of the swing in both of the moves.

https://preview.redd.it/xgvofjcl0wj31.png?width=823&format=png&auto=webp&s=6d2564bbe2ece9506c425397c672c16cd75a2766
These two parts of price moves look like very similar expressions of each other to me. There is the consolidation at the low, and then a big breakout. Looking closer at the top, both of them make false breakouts low before making a top. So I am going to use these swings to draw my fibs on, from the low to the high. What I will be looking for as specific markers is the price reaction to the 1.61% level (highly important fib).
A strategy I have designed around this would look for price to stall at this level, bounce a bit and then make a big breakout and strong trend. This would continue into the 2.20 and 2.61 extension levels. So I'm interested to see if that matches in.

https://preview.redd.it/4tl024da2wj31.png?width=810&format=png&auto=webp&s=09a813fcdf67a0fac41ff1d9a44b540fd1298106
Very similar price moves are seen in the area where price traded through the 1.61 level. The breakout strategy here predicts a retracement and then another sell to new lows.
On the left swing, we made a retracement and now test lows. On the right swing, we've got to the point of testing the lows here. This is making this level very important. The breakout strategy here would predict a swing to 61 is price breaks these lows. This might sound unlikely, but this signal would have been flagged as possible back in 2008. It would require the certain criteria I've explained here, and all of this has appeared on the chart since then. This gives me many reasons to suspect a big sell is coming.

On to the next assumption. For this fall to happen in a strong style like all of these are suggesting, it'd have to be one hell of a move. Elliot wave theory would predict this, if it was wave 3 move, these are the strongest. From these I'm going to form a hypothesis and then see if I can find evidence for or against it. I am going to take the hypothesis that where we are in this current GBPJPY chart is going to late come to been seen in a larger content as this.

https://preview.redd.it/ctcill674wj31.png?width=814&format=png&auto=webp&s=538847fce98009b8177e079aa6a3ecba0684e73f
This hypothesis would have the Brexit lows and correction from this being the same as the small bounce up before this market capitulated. This would forecast there being a break in this pair to the downside, and that then being followed by multiple sustained strong falls.
Since I have my breakout strategy forecasting 61, I check for confluence of anything that may also give that area as a forecast. I'm looking for symmetry, so I take the ratio of the size of the first big fall on the left to the ratio of when it all out crashed. These legs are close to 50% more (bit more, this is easy math). The low to high of the recent swing would be 7,500 pips. So this would forecast 11,000.
When you take that away from the high of 156, it comes in very close to 61. Certainly close enough to be considered within the margin of error this strategy has for forecasting.

I will be posting a lot more detailed trade plans that this. Dealing specific levels to plan to engage the market, stop trailing and taking profit. I'll also quite actively track my trades I am making to enter into the market for this move. This post is to get the broad strokes of why I'm looking for this trade in place, and to help you to have proper content by what I mean when you hear me talking about big sells on this pair and other XXXJPY pairs.
submitted by whatthefx to u/whatthefx [link] [comments]

What Is Forex?

What Is Forex?

A New Era

Although it might seem easy to invest in Forex nowadays, by just logging into an account with a broker, deposit some money and start actively trading; it has not always been like this, as forex industry has rapidly changed in the past three decades.
Before technology and free-floating currencies took over the industry, world currency exchanges were operating under the Bretton Woods System of Money Management. This agreement established rules for commercial and financial relations among top economies, tying their currencies to gold. Hence, a currency note issued by any world government represented a real amount of gold held in a vault by that nation. When in July 1944 delegates from all over the world sign off the pact, the main goal was to reduce lack of cooperation between countries and therefore avoiding currency wars. This process of regulating the foreign exchange brought to the foundation of the international money fund (IMF) and the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), today part of World bank Group.
However, in the early 70s the real-world economics outpaced the system, dollar suffered from severe inflation cutting its value by half. At that time unemployment rate was 6.1% and inflation 5.84%. Finally, in August 1971, U.S. government led by Richard Nixon took away gold standard, creating the first fiat currency and replacing Bretton Woods System with De Facto. Together with this there were other important measures taken by the USA president to combat that high inflation regime:
  1. This decision was driven by many European nations asking to redeem their dollars for gold, till leaving Bretton Woods System. This had an enormous impact on USD which plunged against European currencies. Consequently, USA congress release a report suggesting USD devaluation to protect the currency from foreign gougers. However, dollar dropped again, and Treasury Secretary was directed to suspend the USD convertibility with gold; hence foreign governments could no longer exchange their USD with gold.
  2. The inflation level was skyrocketing and one more action taken by Nixon was to freeze all wages and prices for 90 days, this was the first time since WWII.
  3. Import surcharge of 10% was set up to safeguard American products ensuring no disadvantage in trades.
Today, USD dominates financial markets, accounting together with the EURO, for approximately 50% of all currency exchange transactions in the world.
1971 represents the beginning of a new forex trading era, bringing this market to be the largest and most liquid in the world, with an average of daily trading volume exceeding $5trn. All the world’s combined stock markets don t even come close to this, what does this mean to you?
In an environment which is controlled by free-floating currencies moving constantly, following principles of supply and demand, there are constant and exciting trading opportunities, unavailable when investing in different markets.
In this article are shared main features of what is forex trading today and how can be an incredible new source of income for everyone who is into financial markets.

What Is Forex?

Forex is the acronym for foreign exchange which intends to be a decentralized or over the counter (OTC) marketplace, where currencies from all over the world are traded 24 hours, five days a week. Main financial centres include New York, Chicago, London, Tokyo and Frankfurt for Eurozone. It is by far the largest market in the world in terms of volume, followed by the credit market. Being highly liquid is an important feature that allows traders to be able to enter and exit their positions very quickly. Nevertheless, while trading forex, an investor should be aware of several components:
Dynamicity – forex is an extremely fast environment, this means that currency rates can move very fast, influenced by price action signals and fundamental factors. Therefore, going into forex trading, one needs to be aware of adopting serious risk and money management strategies in order to be effective, limiting losses.
Zero Sum Game – trading forex is not like investing in the stock market but is known to be a zero-sum game. For example, going into the equity market buying some tech shares, they could both rise or decrease in value. In forex is different because currencies work in pairs; for instance, an investor decides Euro will go up he or she is doing it against another currency. Thus, in this specific marketplace one currency will rise while the other will fall, meaning an investor is buying the currency hoping it will appreciate to the other, or selling the one that will depreciate.
See image below:
Figure 1: Main traded currency pairs
https://preview.redd.it/vu77ziuoyle31.png?width=574&format=png&auto=webp&s=9b1693bf27508fcb142705c309de1fc5b3e8fa19
Currency pairs are composed by a base and a price currency. Main forex trading principle is how much price currency an investor can buy using 1 unit of the base, thus, the base currency, which is the first one in line within the quotation, is always equal to 1.
Because like every financial instrument currency pairs are driven by fundamentals of supply and demand, forex is intensively influenced by geopolitical and macroeconomic factors.
Capital Markets – these are the most visible indicators of a country economic health, where usually the healthier the economy the stronger the currency. For example, a rapid sell-off from a country will show that nation is not economically stable, subsequently investors will think negatively of it depreciating its currency.
Moreover, many countries are sector driven, this means that their currencies are strictly correlated with certain resources. For instance, Canada which is a commodity-based market, CAD is strictly linked to price of Brent and metals, a swing in those will affect the Canadian currency.
Finally, credit market is also connected to forex since also relies heavily on interest rate so, a change in bond yield will have major impact on currency prices. like increase in yield will favour bullish market for USD
International Trade – Trade levels serve as a proxy for relative demand of goods from a nation, a country which goods and services that are in high demand internationally, will experience an appreciation to its currency. This is an effect driven by all other countries converting their currencies into the one of that state to purchase its goods and services. Let’s say a product from USA is in high demand globally, all the other countries must sell their currencies to buy dollars to then see their goods shipped, thus USD will appreciate.
Trade surplus and deficit also indicate a nation competitive standing in international trade. Countries with a large trade deficit are usually importers resulting in more of their currencies being sold to buy goods worldwide, thus they will see their currencies devaluate.
Geopolitics – The political landscape of a nation places a major role in the economic outlook for that country and consequently, the perceived value of its own currency. Beside building up price action strategies, based purely on price levels, forex traders constantly look at economic calendars and news to gauge what could move currencies. A geopolitical event which is having a great impact on GBP, is the election of Boris Johnson as UK prime minister, driving the local currency to 2 years low, yesterday 29th of July 2019. Therefore, when investors observe instability from a nation political environment, there are high chances that the currency of that country will depreciate.

Why Trading Forex

Beside swapping from a gold standard to free-floating, which change the whole forex trading game, technology is another crucial factor that helped this financial sector to spread globally. With the introduction of internet in the 90s forex opened to retail investors giving access to various trading platforms. The introduction of online platforms and retail investments have increased forex market volume by 5%, up to $250bn of its daily turnover. Different traders may have different reasons for selecting forex, however, mostly is because this is a fertile market plenty of daily opportunities to gauge price action and profit from it.

Volatility

How traders profit from trading forex? Basics of trading are rather simple to understand. An investor buys an asset at a certain price hoping to get rid of it for a higher price. The more volatile is the market for that specific financial instrument, the more revenue is possible to make. Therefore, a trader is looking for long up and down moves rather than market fluctuating sideways.
Volatility is great in forex and a trader can expect to regularly see prices oscillating 50-100 pips on major currency pairs almost any day of the week. Yet again, due to this enormous constant fluctuation, potential losses or gains can be very high thus, rigours money management must be applied to avoid major damages and become a profitable trader. To conclude, volatility is the main characteristic investors are looking at and that is why it is one of the main feature traders can take advantage.
See image below:

Figure 2: FDAX Volatility, H4 (30th May 2019, 16:00, 30th July 2019, 16:00)

Accessibility & Technology

While volatility is the most important element out in the market that tell us why forex is the best market to trade, accessibility comes straight after. This market is more accessible than all the others, trading forex requires an online desk position and as little as $100 to start off an account.
In comparison with the other financial markets, forex requires a rather low trading capital. Moreover, trading forex can be easily accessible from your PC, tablet or mobile since most of retail broker firms operate online. Although, accessibility cannot tell the quality of the market by itself, it definitely shows a reason why many investors try their first trading experience on forex.
Also, the rapid introduction of technology since the 90s, made trading much easier. There are every year more advanced online platforms to trade on with many possible updates and that is why trading forex is edging for many global investors.

Forex Players

Before the introduction of free-floating currency and more importantly cutting hedge technology, forex was a market that could have been traded only by institutional investors. Nowadays however, even retail and individual investor can take advantage of the huge volume forex offers every day.
Banks
Interbank market is the major responsible for the high volume registered daily in forex. This is the place where banks exchange currency among each other, facilitating forex transactions for customers and speculate for their trading desks.
  • Clients transactions: in this case banks of all size act as dealer for clients, where the bid-ask spread represents the profit for the institutions.
  • Speculation: currencies are traded to profit from their price fluctuations as well as to increase diversification on their portfolio
Because banking institutions are the biggest players in foreign exchange market, they are able to push up and down the price of currencies giving an extreme advantage and higher volatility to individual traders who are trying to gauge price moves.
Central Banks
Central banks representing their nation’s government, are crucial in forex. They oversee monetary and fiscal policies having massive influence on currency rates. A central bank is responsible for fixing the price level of its native currency on the market, in other words they take care of the regime currencies will float in the open market.
  • Floating: these are the currencies which price floats on the open market based on principles of supply and demand relative to other currencies
  • Pegged (fixed exchange rate): opposite to floating currencies pegged ones are not free-floating in the open market however, their government rather tie them to the value of a stronger foreign currency. Pegged currencies are more seen in developing countries (CYN to USD).
Because central banks manage interest rates in order to increase the competitiveness of their native nation to another.
  • Dovish: these policies will be lowering down interest rates. A central bank which applies dovish conditions aims to give economic stimulus and guard against deflation. Usually a policy intended to give economy stimulus will weakening the currency value.
  • Hawkish: on the other hand, hawkish policies lead to an increase in interest rate. A central bank that uses hawkish measures aims to reduce inflation. Typically, this kind of policies will reinforce the country currency value.
Investment Managers & Hedge Funds
Portfolio managers and hedge funds are the second investors in forex after central and investment banks. They are hired by huge institutions such as pension to manage their assets. However while portfolio managers of pool funds will buy currency to speculate on foreign securities, hedge funds execute speculative trades as part of their strategies.
Corporations
Also international corporation play a big role in forex. Those firms operating globally, buying and selling goods and services are involved in forex transactions daily. Imagine an American company producing pipes that imports Japanese components and sell the finished product to China. After the sale is closed the CYN must be converted back to USD, while the American company must exchange USD into JPY to repay for the components supply.
Moreover, company involved in international trade have an interest in forex in order to hedge the risk associated with currencies fluctuations making several foreign exchange transactions. For instance, the same American company might buy JPY at spot rate, or enter a swap agreement to obtain JPY in advance, overtaking the risk of the Japanese currency to rise in the future. Therefore, forex become crucial to run companies with many subsidiaries and suppliers all over the word.
Individual & Retail Investors
Even though this investor cluster brings to forex a very limited volume compared to financial institutions and corporations, it is rapidly growing in numbers and popularity. These base their trades on a mixture of fundamentals and technical analysis.
Bottom line, main reason why forex is the most traded market in the world is because gives everyone, from top financial institutions to retail and individual trades, opportunities to make returns on capital invested from currencies price fluctuations related to global economy.
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GBP/USD forecast November 12, 2020. gpb/usd technical analysis

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