So far, we have told you what the Forex market is all about, the methods through which you can get to access and trade this market, and which type of trader you can be in the market; but what about when you can trade the market? We have already told you that the Forex market is available 24/5, which is 24 hours in 5 days of the week, right? We would say that is largely correct, but not entirely the state of things. You can access the forex market at every minute and hour of the day (during the week) but not all currency pairs are actually active at every point in the day. Some are active during some time-blocks and others at another time. Hence the reason why you need to be introduced to the concept of forex time zones or forex trading sessions.
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Why you need to understand the concept of trading sessions
In the Forex market, you are expected to make money when the market goes on an uptrend or on a downtrend (so far your analysis is correct), but what about when the market does not move at all, and instead stays at the same spot ranging for endless hours? You obviously don’t want to be in a trade when this happens as it can be pretty frustrating, right? But that is what happens if you enter the market at the very wrong time; and this can happen if you are not vast in the concept of trading sessions and time zones. This is because the world is not usually awake at the same time; some parts of the world may be bubbling and alive while persons on the other end are at sleep. You know how you have to wait until certain periods of the day to call your friend or relative in another continent? That’s the same way things play out in the forex market as well.
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Forex Trading Sessions
There are actually no overly strict rules as to which trading sessions there are. Some people have identified 3 trading sessions (this is the most popular), some 4 sessions, and others 5 sessions. Because we do not want you to encounter anything difficult in your forex journey, we’ve taken the pains to break it down to the 5 trading sessions.
- Sydney Session
- Tokyo Session
- Frankfurt Session
- London Session
- New York Session.
However, it is very important that you note that the times actually attached to each session vary on the season of the year that we are in. That is, during the Fall/Winter (late in the year too early the following year), there are particular hours attached, whilst during the Spring/Summer, the hours tend to adjust. They are outlined below.
Otherwise known as the Australian session, New Zealand (also a big financial center) is also open at this time. During Summer or Spring, the Australian Session starts at 10PM GMT (6PM EST) and closes at 7AM GMT (3AM EST) while during Fall/Winter, spans from 9PM GMT (5PM EST) to 6AM GMT (2AM EST). As a result, when the Australian session starts on Monday morning in Sydney, most of the rest of the world would still be in early evening on Sunday. The Sydney session is a time for the AUD and NZD to be most active, and pairs that make for sensible trading hours include the AUD/USD, NZD/USD, USD/JPY and minors like the AUD/NZD and AUD/JPY.
Otherwise referred to as the Asian Session, other financial centers that are also opened at this time include Hong Kong and Singapore. In Summer/Spring time, the Asian Session starts an hour after the Sydney’s at 11PM GMT (7PM EST) and ends at 8AM GMT (4 AM) and remains exactly the same during Fall/Winter. The Asian Session id the time when the JPY gets really active, and the pairs that really do move at this session include the USD/JPY; the Sydney/Australian session will also be open at this time and as such pairs like AUD/JPY and NZD/JPY might make good trades.
Although it is not referred to as a separate session on its own, it is still recognized in many quarters. The Frankfurt session opens at 6AM GMT (2AM EST) and ends at 3PM GMT (11AM EST); while it runs from 7AM GMT (3AM EST) to 11PM GMT (7PM EST) during Fall/Winter Here, we start to see an uptick in volatility of the Euro.
Officially known as the European Session, the London Session marks the beginning of real-time financial activities all across Europe. Starting at 7AM GMT (3AM EST) and ending at 4PM GMT (12PM EST) and from 8AM GMT (4AM EST) to 5PM GMT (1PM EST). These are the best times to trade the EUR and GBP, and almost all pairs involving the GBP and EUR are recommended.
Officially known as the American Session, the New York session starts at 12PM GMT (8AM EST) and comes to an end at 9PM (5PM EST); 1PM GMT (9AM EST) to 10PM GMT (6PM EST) during Fall/Winter. This is the time when the USD is most active, and all USD pairs become very active here.
Which is best to trade?
If you ask us really, the answer depends on numerous factors which include the time zone of where you are located and which currencies (or pairs) you love the most to trade. Say you are located in Hong Kong, you most likely will be awake when the Asian-Pacific currencies – AUD, NZD, JPY – are most active; and you would most likely be soundly asleep when the New York session kicks to gear. Should you then miss the opportunities therein?
If you ask us really, there are so many opportunities to be taken advantage of from the Forex markets and whatever your time zone is should not pose restrictions. Furthermore, the whole time zones and trading sessions debacle can be really daunting and overwhelming for newbie and professional traders alike. Why not get winning forex signals that can make you money irrespective of your time zone, even while you are asleep? The forex trading signals provided by 1000pip Builder are one of the most profitable out there.