Introduction to Forex Trading

It's true that Forex can be a little confusing to figure out at first but with the proper introduction to Forex Trading, it is not complex at all.  In fact if you have ever traveled overseas or made a purchase in a another country you have technically participated in Foreign exchange.  I am hopeful this post will serve as a basic foundation to understanding currency trading.

Let's Start With Something Most Are Familiar With: Stocks!!

In any business or moneymaking venture, preparation and foreknowledge are the keys to success.  Without this sort of insight, the attempt to make a profitable financial decision can only end in disaster and failure, regardless of your level of motivation and determination or the amount of money you plan to invest.

In the stock market, this rule applies to the nth degree, as you are investing your own money in what could be considered a high risk wager, and you are playing with fire if you do not have at least a general background knowledge of how it functions.  Since having a background in any area is helpful in guiding you down a path in that particular region, the more solid your basis of investment knowledge is, the more likely you are to profit from any attempt to trade on the open market.

In many ways, trading on the stock market can be compared to driving – you do not have to be an expert to get behind the wheel of a car, though you are expected to have some previous knowledge about basic traffic laws, including moving violations, safety regulations, and other legal vehicular infractions, which are learned through either specific study and coursework or even through some form of simple exposure (such as the years you have spent riding with your parents and others who have driven for years).  You should be able to comprehend the basic tools used to navigate a car (where the break pedal is located versus the gas, and how to use the rearview mirror, for example), even if you have never touched a steering wheel.

The same is true in entering the world of the stock market.  While you do not have to know all the terminology (you will not be short selling or determining your own long and short positions at first, so you do not have to understand these references completely, though you should be aware of them), you should certainly be versed in the basic functionality of trading stocks, bonds, securities, and other commodities.  And just like someone who is behind the wheel of a car and getting ready to touch the gas pedal for the first time, you should start out with caution and work your way in slowly.  A first time driver will first set the mirrors to his or her own liking, then put the car in gear, look for any interfering traffic, and ease onto the gas pedal, never flooring it and testing the engine coming out of the gate on the first attempt.  Likewise, when you select your first investment, you should choose something stable with little fluctuation and not invest a large sum of money on this first venture.

When a person is learning to drive, he or she will be accompanied by another individual who is more experienced and can assist them in making better driving decisions and offering corrections that will aid in learning to handle the car more efficiently.  In the stock market, there are stockbrokers and other experts who can give you input and advice to help you in building your knowledge of the commodities in which you are interested, essentially “steering” you toward better stock market buying and selling decisions.

You could spend hours and hours researching the stock market and its functionality, learning how to become involved in the trade and who to contact to get in the game, especially if your interest lies in the Foreign Exchange Market, which goes far beyond the level of complication of the domestic stock market.

How Investment Works

Any time you are going to be putting your money into a fund; it is a good idea to start by understanding what you are buying into.  The stock market is a complicated entity, and doing minimal business in trading requires a fair amount of basic knowledge, as well as the understanding and acceptance of the high risk factor.  The more you know in advance regarding the functionality of the system, the less likely it is that you will take a heavy hit, ending in devastating loss.

First of all and probably most important in the trading business, you should understand what stocks actually are.  When you buy or sell a stock on the open market, you should keep in mind that you are dealing with real objects, not pieces of paper; you are buying and selling real parts of a particular company, its product, or some other various commodity.

Owning a “share” means that you have actually bought into the company or product involved and become a partial owner of that commodity.  Of course, you could be one of millions of shareholders, as most companies and products are broken into minute pieces of the whole, but you are still considered an investor in that company or product until you sell your shares.

Think of it as paying for a tank of gas in the car that your parents bought for you to drive.  You may have even bought the oil filter that has been put on the car, and you may feel that this investment makes you part owner.  However, when you look at the overall cost of the car, you have really contributed very little to that amount.  However, as long as you continue to invest in the gas for the car and take care of the maintenance needs, you can claim part ownership of the car.

Because the value of a company and its products or services can fluctuate continuously, the value of the stocks you hold will not be the same from day to day and can sometimes even change hourly.  When the price per share drops and is considered low, it is an ideal time to purchase.  This is the least expensive way to begin your trading venture, and working with a stock broker will allow you to gain more information as to what stocks are ripe for the purchase at any given time.

In doing so, you become a stockholder, and the value of your holdings will fluctuate from day to day.  Your analysis is that the value of the company or product in which you have invested will increase or rebound from the low price at which you made your purchase. This is the goal of all traders and means that your stock will become more valuable.

As the value of your securities increases, so does your net worth.  When the price of the stock in your possession reaches a high point, it is time to sell, making a profit on your original investment.  Ideally, you will always sell your holdings for a reasonably higher price than the purchase amount and should never sell when the current value of the stock is below your initial purchase price.  It is important to make sure that you do not purposely take a net loss because there are plenty of occasions when you could be forced to take a loss.

For example, if you purchase shares of a company at twenty dollars each, you should never sell them for eighteen dollars apiece.  If possible, you want to hold off until they are each worth perhaps forty dollars, in essence doubling your money.  Of course, this is just an example, and not all stocks will ever double in value, but the illustration is meaningful.

There are other, more complex ways to invest in the stock market.  However, much like learning to ride a bicycle, you do not want to make your first attempt without training wheels.

Making Decisions In The Beginning

Let us return to driving as a reference.  When you first start driving, you will not enter the highway and take the car at speeds of sixty and seventy miles per hour.  Instead, you will stay in residential areas or at least on the access road, where there is less pressure to maintain such a high speed.  In the stock market, you will also want to stay away from any expensive stocks or extremely volatile investments until you have become extremely comfortable with the process of trading.

There are safer investment opportunities usually found with investing in more stable well established companies that have been in business for decades.  Investing in these types of companies will help you try out your sea legs and get a feel for how the stock market works prior to investing in riskier newer companies that have less of a rack record and could result in risking a big financial loss.

Once you get the hang of it and can better judge the market trends, you can comfortably move on to more complicated and adventurous areas of the market.  It is like removing the training wheels from your bicycle or entering the freeway the first time at an hour of the day when there is no traffic to contend with.

Be aware that, just like you may fall off your bike once or twice and end up with some scrapes and bruises, you may lose money in an investment here and there.  This is very typical, and investing in the stock market is a lot like gambling.  In poker, you cannot expect to win every hand, and the same is true in the world of investments.  Learning to watch the market trends, though, is similar to watching other cars as you join traffic and determining the correct speed and proximity to other cars for optimal safety.  Such diligent study can help you improve your statistics drastically in a short time.

 

Stock Market Trends

 Understanding stock market trends can make your job of earning money in the market much simpler.  In contrast, if you know little or nothing about these trends can cause serious loss.

 Bulls And Bears

As you dig deeper into the market and learn more about the way it functions, you will begin to hear certain terms about marketing trends that seem to be repeated over and over again.  Market trends are variable and volatile, both on a daily basis and over extended periods of time.  In the past, for example, the United States has had devastating stock market crashes, but due to the freedom of a capitalist society, the American economy has always eventually rebound.

What does it mean for the market or a particular stock to rebound?  Assuming that the value of a company or its stock has plummeted to a level that seem unrecoverable, leaving it practically worthless, it may feel as though that company is in danger of bankruptcy and falling off the scope of the free trade markets altogether.  All of a sudden, however, the founder of that company may introduce a new product over which consumers go wild.  Everyone wants one, and this product may be in short supply upon its introduction, causing a race to the department store shelves.

When such a move occurs, the law of supply and demand will take over, making the company valuable once again.  The stock price for that company’s shares will recover, and the resulting gain in value would be considered a rebound – a return to the original status (or better) prior to the devastating loss.

The market trends either up or down, and there are specific references to strong changes in the market values that you may frequently hear.  If several different areas of the market are in a steep downward slide, with values dropping rapidly (perhaps even ten or twenty percent in a few days), it is referred to as a bear market.  You can remember this reference if you put in your mind that when a bear fights for something they tend to strike downwards – if you are in possession of several stocks or other commodities worth a goodly sum, you have a serious chance of losing a great deal of value that could translate to a loss of net worth should you choose to sell, and it can be a similar, very dangerous situation.

Your best bet in these cases is to either sell before prices drop below your original purchase price or to hold onto the shares until the market rebounds.  However, when the bear market reaches a low point, it can be an ideal time to get into the game, as it is rare for prices to drop below this point.  Then, if you patiently await the recovery or rebound of the market, you can make a great deal of money from a bear market.

At the same time, a bull market is a strong general upward trend for many stocks. You can remember this reference if you put in your mind that when a bulls fights for something they trend to strike upward using their bull horns. If you own stock during a bull market, you are in a prime position to increase your net worth and sell your shares, making a great deal of money.

The Market Outlook

By taking note of various changes in the status of different available stock options, you will learn how to spot early market trends, giving you a clue to the future of a particular commodity, and this can only add to your chances for profitability.  Prediction is a big part of the game when working in the stock market, since you can never be completely certain in what direction the market will swing at any given time.

However, you can make an educated guess, using skills that you acquire through a formal education, being self taught or being instructed via your mentor.  Think of the markets as compared to being a meteorologist. While he or she is not right 100% of the time, the forecast is usually quite close to the actual outcome of the weather because the meteorologist is a scientist who has studied weather trends and can pick out details that assist in making that educated guess.  With a little time and seasoning, you can attain the same level of experience and intuition within the stock market.

Once you have become more comfortable functioning in the same world as the stockbrokers and day traders, and you feel confident (or at least less nervous or awkward) making such important financial decisions, you may decide to make your move toward the Foreign Exchange Market (more commonly known as Forex), and the goal of this post is to introduce you as to how to operate within the boundaries of this more complex entity.

Since most people have at least heard of the stock market having this a the foundation of Forex understanding makes the transition to Forex trading much more simpler to explain.

The Foreign Exchange Market is incredibly volatile, and there are a lot more factors to consider when placing an order on this market than on a domestic market.  Always keep this fact in mind when deciding on delving into the Forex trading world.

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