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How to Start Forex Trading for Beginners

September 28, 2020 14:05 UTC
Reading time: 9 minutes

If you have decided to, or are still considering whether to become a professional Forex trader, you are probably wondering things such as 'How do you start Forex trading' or 'How much money do you need to start Forex trading?'.

This article will address such questions, and more, by providing you with a step by step guide on how to start Forex trading online today. We will look at things such as, which types of accounts you should consider, how these accounts differ, and then of course, how much money a beginner needs to trade Forex.

How to Start Forex Trading

How to Start Forex Trading

There are a dizzying array of questions and variables to consider when you begin trading. Will you trade using fundamental or technical analysis? Or perhaps, a combination of both? Do you want to start day trading Forex or will you be taking a longer-term approach? Will you trade rigidly based on the rules of a particular Forex system? Will you take a more discretionary approach? The questions are endless, but ultimately they determine what you will achieve in the market, and how you do it. You can also break these questions down into even more specific directions.

Let's first look at how much money you need to start trading Forex. The answer may be smaller than you think – it's actually zero. A demo trading account allows you to start trading Forex without an initial investment and experience the live Forex markets, without risk, by trading with virtual currency. Admiral Markets offers clients the ability to trade virtual funds of up to $10,000 in their Forex demo account.

With a demo account, you can even access our expert trading platform, MetTrader Supreme Edition. By mixing the use of a demo account and a live account, you can test your strategies within a risk free environment first, before you move onto the live markets. If you are a beginner, a demo account is the perfect way to start Forex trading and get a feel of what the live markets are like.

After all, part of learning is making mistakes – but you with a demo account, you will not have to lose capital by doing so. Another important thing to consider when you start trading is how to implement risk management into your trading. Doing so will enable you to manage the risks effectively, so you are aware of them, and you know how to reduce your exposure to these risks.

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The Forex Market: A Market For Everyone

Let's consider the Forex market for a moment. Much is made of the vast size of the FX market, but its egalitarian accessibility is often overlooked. Small players happily play alongside the largest participants. There is a place at the table for everyone because of the surprisingly low barriers to entry. High levels of leverage allow small deposits to command sizeable positions.

In short, this means you can make trades without tying up a lot of your cash. Obviously, you should never trade beyond your means, but leverage offers a very convenient way of trading.

How Much Money Do I Need To Open A Forex Account?

It really depends on the type of account. Because different account types offer a variety of services and generally require different starting deposits. But for the most part, you can open an account with a relatively small deposit.

For example, with Admiral Markets, you can open a Trade.MT5 or a Zero.MT5 account with a minimum deposit of $100 (or a similar amount in other currencies). The Trade.MT5 account offers low spreads and highly competitive leverage, whereas the Zero.MT5 offers ultra-low spreads and institutional-grade speed of execution which is well suited for high frequency traders.

Be Risk-Aware

EURGBP Daily Chart MetaTrader 5Depicted: Admiral Markets MetaTrader 5 - EURGBP Daily Chart. Disclaimer: Charts for financial instruments in this article are for illustrative purposes and does not constitute trading advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any financial instrument provided by Admiral Markets (CFDs, ETFs, Shares). Past performance is not necessarily an indication of future performance.

You should never trade more than you can afford to lose. When considering how much to start Forex trading with, it is very much an issue of your own personal finances, and your own attitude to risk. Trading can often be a nerve-wracking and pressure-filled experience. One simple way to ease this is to trade conservatively. This will help you cope with these conditions.

Let's look at an example to get a feel for how much we are talking about. A sensible rule of thumb is that you shouldn't be risking more than 1% or 2% of your capital per trade. For the sake of convenience, let's use 1%.

The minimum trade size with the Trade.MT5 account is 0.01 lots. A lot is a standard transaction size for each currency pair and equates to 100,000 units of the base currency. Let's say you decide to buy 0.01 lots of EURUSD. This is a position that means you make or lose 0.1 USD for every pip movement. The margin for a position this small would be covered by your minimum deposit.

How Do You Quantify Risk?

Here's the kicker – quantifying the risk attached to an individual trade is a tricky business. We can broadly say that the risk is the amount of loss you would be willing to withstand before closing the position. However, this likely underestimates the risk because you may subsequently change your mind and tolerate a greater loss. There may also be times when a market moves faster than you can react.

One way to try to draw a line under the position and quantify the risk is to use a stop-loss. But be aware that a conventional stop order is not guaranteed. A stop order becomes an order to deal on the market once its level has been hit. However, in the event of a fast-moving or gapping market, your stop-loss may not be executed, due to slippage.

In short, stops do not mean any maximum loss is set in stone, but they do give you a rough and useful idea of your risk for normal conditions. Let's say you placed your stop 80 pips away. For our rough estimation, we could say that the theoretical risk is 80 pips x 0.1 USD per pip = $8.

If we are assigning a theoretical risk of $8 to this trade, and we are also saying one trade is 1% of our total risk capital, then the total risk capital must be $8 x 100 = $800. These are just some sample numbers, of course.

If you worked with tighter stops, your risk capital would be even smaller. If you worked with wider stops and/or a larger transaction size, you would need more risk capital. Here's another way of considering the question – successful trading is about winning in the long run. To win in the long run, you must not have your capital wiped out in the short run.

Still want to know how much money you need for Forex trading? Put simply, you need enough to avoid blowing up. Look at price catastrophes that have occurred historically in your chosen currency pair. Think about what such movements would mean to you with your average trading size. Make sure that your risk capital is large enough to withstand such price shocks.

Once you're up and running, and in a position to make steady returns, you might start to consider how much money you need to start Forex trading like a full-time business. If you are trying to find out what realistic monthly returns for a trader are, you are going to be trading in sizes that are much larger than usual minimums. Therefore, your risk capital will have to be larger as well.

Final Thoughts

If you start conservatively and use sensible money management, you do not need a large amount of money to trade Forex. It is possible to start trading with only a few hundred Dollars, provided your trading sizes are small. If you are willing to put in the preparatory leg work, you should be able to discover a trading approach that works for you.

There's one more thing to consider – people who succeed at trading Forex, work hard at it. The more effort you put in, the more likely you are to succeed. So, when facing a new, challenging venture, the only correct option is to learn more about what you are getting into. If you would like to learn more about Forex, or trading in general, why not check out range of articles and tutorials?

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About Admiral Markets

Admiral Markets is a multi-award winning, globally regulated Forex and CFD broker, offering trading on over 8,000 financial instruments via the world's most popular trading platforms: MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Start trading today!

This material does not contain and should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. Please note that such trading analysis is not a reliable indicator for any current or future performance, as circumstances may change over time. Before making any investment decisions, you should seek advice from independent financial advisors to ensure you understand the risks.