What is Forex?
Also referred to as forex or the FX market, the foreign exchange market is the largest financial market in the world, with a daily turnover above 6 trillion dollars. Unlike other markets, forex has no physical or centralized location. It is open 24 hours a day, from Sunday night to Friday night. Forex trading is essentially the simultaneous buying of one currency and selling of another on this massive decentralized global market.
In the Forex market, currencies are always quoted and traded in pairs, such as the GBPUSD. The first currency (GBP) is the base currency, while the second (USD) is the counter or quote currency. The price of the GBPUSD at any given time is the exchange rate of the two currencies. In the GBPUSD example, the prevailing price will indicate the amount of US dollars you will have to pay for 1 unit of GBP (Pound sterling).
You can speculate on the prices of over 300 major, minor, and exotic currency pairs, on all our intuitive and powerful platforms.
- There are 8 major currencies: USD, JPY, EUR, GBP, CHF, CAD, AUD, and NZD. A major currency pair is any of the other 7 currencies paired with the USD, such as the EURUSD and USDJPY.
- Minors are any of the other 7 major currencies when not paired with the USD. Examples include the AUD JPY, EUR CAD, and EUR GBP.
- Exotic currencies are currencies of emerging nations, such as Hong Kong, Norway, and South Africa. An exotic currency pair will include one major currency and one exotic currency, such as the USDZAR, USDNOK, and USD HKD.
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