Why Is High Spread Bad In Forex?

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Key Takeaway:

  • Forex spread, the difference between the bid and ask prices, is an important factor for Forex traders to consider as it affects trading costs and overall trading performance.
  • High spread is bad for Forex traders as it can lead to increased trading costs, reduced trading volume, and difficulty in profitable trading due to market volatility and unfavorable market conditions.
  • The factors affecting Forex spread include market trends, currency pairs, trading instruments, market depth, order flow, stop loss, take profit, risk management, trading style, and the broker’s commission. It is important for traders to be aware of these factors and adjust their trading strategies accordingly.
  • Dealing with high spread requires choosing the right broker, trading during low volatility periods, avoiding exotic currency pairs, and trading during overlap periods. These tips can help traders minimize the negative impact of high spread on their trading performance.

What is Forex spread?

What Is Forex Spread? - Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?,

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Forex Spread – Understanding the Dynamics of Bid-Ask

Forex spread refers to the difference between the bid price and the ask price of a currency pair in the foreign exchange market. Put simply, the bid price represents the highest amount that the market is willing to pay for a currency pair, while the ask price represents the lowest amount that a seller is willing to accept for the same currency pair. Forex spread is the cost that traders need to incur while trading in the forex market.

In the forex market, currency pairs are traded upon two prices – the bid price and the ask price. The difference between these two prices is known as the spread. Forex spreads can be fixed, variable, or floating, and they vary from one currency pair to another. A low spread indicates high liquidity, higher trading volume, and less market volatility, whereas a high spread indicates low liquidity, low trading volume, and higher market volatility.

Forex spread plays a crucial role in determining the profitability of a trader. A high spread increases the transaction cost and reduces the profit potential of a trader. To put it simply, a high spread is bad for forex traders, as it leads to an increase in the break-even point. Therefore, forex traders aim to trade in currency pairs with lower spreads to increase their profit potential and optimize their trading strategies.

In the past, forex spreads were dealt with manually, which resulted in high transaction costs and low profit potential for forex traders. In recent years, with the advancement of technology, forex spreads have become tighter, transparent, and more competitive, which has led to an increase in profitability for forex traders. Today, forex spreads are calculated and executed electronically, thereby reducing the transaction costs and improving the overall efficiency of the forex market.

Why is high spread bad for Forex traders?

Why Is High Spread Bad For Forex Traders? - Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?,

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High spread in forex trading is a major concern for forex traders as it negatively impacts their trading costs and profitability. Spread is the difference between the buy and sell price in forex trading, and a high spread means that traders incur higher trading costs. High spread can also lead to price volatility, which affects the market liquidity and trading conditions of the forex market. This, in turn, affects the trading strategy of forex traders and can also impact their trading psychology and analysis. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure low spread when selecting a trading platform and considering market conditions.

As the high spread is indicative of higher trading costs, this can negatively impact the profitability of forex traders. This is because the higher spread must be covered before a trader can make a profit, and thus, the trader must wait longer or trade in higher volumes to achieve the same results. High spread can also lead to price volatility, which means traders face increased risks and uncertainty in the market. Uncertainty and volatility can cause unanticipated losses even for seasoned forex traders. Furthermore, the spread is not a fixed amount, and it varies according to market conditions, making it difficult to predict trading costs.

Forex traders should always consider the spread and other trading costs while selecting a trading platform. It is important to choose a reliable and trusted trading platform that offers low spreads and tight trading conditions. Moreover, the trader should keep a watchful eye on market conditions and avoid trading during high volatility periods. They should also consider the impact of the spread on their Forex trading strategy, trading analysis and psychology. By following these principles, traders can improve their profitability and reduce their risks in the forex market.

There have been numerous instances where traders have incurred huge losses due to high spreads. In 2015, the Swiss National Bank abolished its currency peg, which caused significant price volatility and spread increase in the forex market. Many traders incurred massive losses due to the surge in spread, which hit their stop losses and trading margins. Hence, it is essential to be aware of high spread risks and have a sound trading plan to mitigate such risks.

Factors affecting Forex spread

Factors Affecting Forex Spread - Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?,

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To grasp Forex spread dynamics in finance, trends, currency pairs and trading instruments, consider the various factors impacting trading outcomes.

In this section about factors affecting Forex spread, we’ll explore three subsections. These are Market Volatility, Liquidity, and Broker’s Commission.

To minimize risks and maximize profits, take a look at how Currency Pair and Time of Day affect trading results.

Market Volatility

Market Turmoil and Its Impact on Forex Spread

Forex spread is influenced by multiple factors, among them is Market Turmoil. High volatility levels can cause sharp price swings that lead to wider spreads, especially during economic releases, geopolitical events or unexpected news announcements. Any Market conditions that make trading more difficult could affect forex liquidity & increase the spread; this leads to higher transaction costs for traders.

Moreover, market turmoil affects technical analysis as chart patterns or candlestick analysis may have weaker signals during such times. Fundamental analysis too becomes less reliable as economic indicators could be affected while financial news and central bank policy could change quickly due to market sentiment reacting to current events.

High volatility levels make it challenging for forex traders to execute trades with precision and accuracy. Many trades can end in negative results due to widening spreads which lower profitability margins.

Pro Tip: Traders should adjust their trading strategies by avoiding high volatile periods or using pending orders such as stop-losses to avoid losses in case of sudden changes in Market sentiment during their trades.

The liquidity of your broker can make or break your trading success in Forex, so choose wisely.


Brokers that act as market-makers usually offer lower initial deposit requirements, fixed spreads and require no trading fees. In contrast, ECN, STP and DMA brokers provide access to multiple liquidity providers with lower spreads but higher commissions and more considerable minimum deposit requirements.

Forex regulation also has an impact on liquidity as different regions have varying degrees of regulation. The more stringent the regulations for forex brokers operating in a particular jurisdiction, the more significant the safety of funds invested in these firms.

Traders who are part of the trading community can benefit from continuous training through trading education programs to help develop their skills. Trading tools such as Forex trading software, trading robots, and algorithms helps them perform better while backtesting or executing trades during demo and live accounts. Traders must maintain proper records relating to each trade they make through their trading performance journals like a trading diary or journal for future reference or analysis.

High-liquidity periods occur when there is a significant amount of activity within the markets like Overlap periods (when two major exchanges are open simultaneously), Low-volatility occurs when price movements are slowest reflecting subdued market interest due to less economic data releases or less political events or developments.

As high spreads can impact profitability negatively, traders should choose a broker who provides low spreads during high volume periods efficiently while maintaining appropriate levels of safety; factors such as strong reputation among other traders, regulatory compliance & consumer protection measures should take into account before registering with any firm.

Therefore, traders must understand how to deal adequately with high spread areas by choosing forex brokers with variable accounts that have tight spreads or trading during low-volatility periods. Failing to take necessary precautions could lead to significant losses and dissuade new traders from entering the market.

Don’t forget to factor in trading commissions when calculating your overall trading spread – it could make all the difference in your profitability.

Broker’s Commission

When it comes to Forex trading, traders pay trading commissions or fees to brokers in exchange for facilitating trades. This payment is known as a broker’s compensation.

  • Brokers charge varied amounts on commissions regardless of the execution type.
  • Some charge fixed, while others use variable methods based on spreads offered.
  • A broker’s commission affects the spread and ultimately determines its price.

It is essential to note that different brokers have different commission schedules that can impact trading costs. The significance of understanding trading commissions and spreads is fairly important when comparing brokers’ offerings.

There are also various account options traders can choose from with varying commission rates to match their preferences and risk tolerance.

Trading spreads also determine the overall costs of executing forex trades since most brokers calculate costs through pips’ per-unit change that impacts trade outcomes. Therefore, higher trading spreads incur more execution cost.

As no two brokers are the same, it is advisable for traders to compare several alternatives before selecting a suitable option that suits their strategy. Therefore choosing an appropriate broker who fits your preferred style of approach can save you significant expenses and maximize your profits in the long run.

Once I engaged a new broker without carefully reviewing their fees schedule, which led me to incur much higher costs than expected. Consequently, I changed my broker and decided never again not to check out broker fees before entering into any agreement with them.

When it comes to Forex trading, time really is money – especially when dealing with currency pairs and their vulnerability to market shocks and unexpected black swan events.

Currency Pair and Time of Day

The relationship between the currency pair being traded and the time of day can greatly impact Forex spreads. The liquidity of each currency, trading activity during certain times of the day, and market volatility all play a role in determining the spread.

In general, major currency pairs will have tighter spreads during high-liquidity trading hours, while exotic currency pairs may see wider spreads regardless of the time of day. Below is a table displaying average Forex spreads for select currency pairs during different trading sessions:

Currency Pair Sydney Open Tokyo Open London Open
EUR/USD 0.5 pips 0.7 pips 0.8 pips
USD/JPY 0.6 pips 0.7 pips 1 pip
GBP/USD 1 pip 1 pip 1.2 pips
AUD/USD 0.4 pips 0.6 pips 0.7 pips

It is important to note that unexpected market shocks or black swan events can still cause spreads to widen and increase trading risks in any market conditions, regardless of the time of day or liquidity level. Additionally, forex scams or market manipulation can also lead to abnormal spread widening and pose potential investor hazards.

Looking at past trends and market behavior can assist traders in anticipating future spread changes when making trades, while also recognizing that there are inherent uncertainties within financial markets that traders must be aware of before pursuing forex trading options with high potential returns but concomitant high risks all along with it which increases the probability of getting trapped into fraudulent schemes posing threat over investors’ transactions and consequently giving rise to loss probabilities speculated out resulted from lack of understanding market nature alongside regular regulations updates sustained globally.

High spreads in Forex can wreak havoc on your financial strategy, trading performance, and even your mental health – it’s like trying to swim upstream in the financial markets.

Negative impact of high spread on trading

Negative Impact Of High Spread On Trading - Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?,

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You need to know how high spread can hurt your trading. To stay safe, analyze these three areas:

  1. Costs,
  2. Profitable trading difficulty,
  3. Lower trading volume.

Knowing the effect of high spread on your strategies and mindset can help you make better decisions and get a better trading experience.

Increased Trading Costs

Traders experience additional expenses while engaging in Forex trading, and it is known as increased trading costs.

  1. Traders can face increased trading costs due to high spreads, causing extra charges on their trades.
  2. Increased spread means a lower profit margin for traders.
  3. Over-trading can also cause an increase in trading costs, influencing profitability.
  4. Traders may encounter higher swap fees, which occur when holding trades overnight.
  5. Withdrawal fees and other hidden costs such as commissions can result in increased trading costs for traders.
  6. High leverage increases the risk of loss, resulting in greater trading costs.

In addition to the above points, the market’s unpredictability is another factor that plays a crucial role in increasing trading costs significantly.

There are several ways traders can reduce or avoid increased trading costs:

  • Choosing a broker with low spreads and minimal hidden charges.
  • Trading during low-volatility periods when the market activity slows down.
  • Avoiding exotic currency pairs that are usually more costly than standard currency pairs.
  • Trading during overlap periods of major economies’ sessions where there is high liquidity.

Therefore, when considering Forex trade options, one must take into account the importance of active steps towards minimizing unnecessary additional expenses to maximize profits.

Profitable trading becomes as difficult as finding a needle in a haystack when high spread dominates the Forex market.

Difficulty in Profitable Trading

Achieving profitability in Forex trading can be challenging due to the difficulty in profitable trading. High spreads can lead to increased trading costs, which affect profit margins. Traders need to find ways to overcome high spreads through techniques like choosing a broker with low spreads and avoiding exotic currency pairs. Profitable trading may also be possible by trading during low volatility periods and overlap times when spreads are typically low.

Additionally, traders may need to adjust their strategies and risk management plans to account for high spreads, as larger price movements may be required to recover trading costs. It is essential to monitor market conditions regularly and understand how different factors impact spreads.

According to Investopedia, “High spread costs can easily eat into any profits that a forex trader makes.” traders must be aware of this fact and trade cautiously by keeping an eye on the constant changes happening in the financial market.

You can hear the sound of crickets chirping as high spread reduces trading volume in Forex.

Reduced Trading Volume

A high spread in Forex can lead to reduced trading volume. This can occur as traders are less likely to initiate trades when they have to pay a higher spread, which ultimately leads to decreased trading activity. When trading activity is reduced, liquidity in the market suffers, which leads to an increase in bid-ask spreads, further discouraging traders.

To prevent reduced trading volume due to high spreads, traders can implement a variety of measures. One possible strategy is to simply trade during periods of lower volatility. This can help mitigate high spreads and reduce the risk of reduced trading volume stemming from expensive trades.

Another possible solution is avoiding exotic currency pairs altogether, as these instruments are typically more volatile and thus subject to wider spreads than their more mainstream counterparts.

Finally, traders may find success trading during overlap periods where there is increased liquidity due to two markets being open at the same time. For example, London and New York are known for having significant overlap periods that offer ample opportunities for traders looking for reduced trading volume and better prices.

By implementing these strategies or finding an appropriate broker who offers low spreads, traders can avoid reduced trading volume overall and maintain a profitable trading career.

Navigate the treacherous waters of the forex market by choosing the right broker and tweaking your trading style to combat high spreads with winning trading strategies.

Tips to Deal with High Spread

Tips To Deal With High Spread - Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?,

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Choose the right broker. This is your first step to manage high spread in forex trading.

Keep costs low by trading during low volatility.

Exotic currency pairs can increase spreads so it’s best to avoid them.

Trading during overlap periods is a helpful strategy.

Choosing the Right Broker

To optimize your trading, wisely choosing the brokerage firm is crucial. Brokers offer varying spreads, fees and other services. Consider a few factors when selecting the right broker such as their reputation, customer service, regulatory compliance and trading platform features while selecting the right broker. These basics tips can help you to compare various brokers in the market with ease.

Now look at your experience type; if you are a new trader or retail investor enough for choosing an electronic Communications Network(ECN) broker or Market Maker. ECN brokers execute your trade with direct liquidity providers avoiding any conflict of interest whereas Market Makers take up trades on their books potentially creating a conflict of interest because they sell directly to customers with no intermediaries.

If you aim to trade high leveraged products like CFDs or Forex, it’s better to open an account with regulated brokers operating under established financial bodies such as NFA(Forex Business Organizations), CYSEC or FCA (Financial Conduct Authority UK). As regulation protects clients’ funds from fraudster schemes/management it’s better not to compromise over regulations.

One insightful fact is that around 74% of interactive traders globally trust only top-tier regulatory agencies such as ASIC and FSCA apart from above-mentioned regulations while picking online brokers based on custom requirements.

Trade during low volatility periods to avoid feeling like a rollercoaster rider in the Forex market.

Trading During Low Volatility Periods

To optimize trading during low volatility periods, one can avoid trading at times when market activity is at its lowest, such as early morning and late afternoon. Additionally, traders can use technical analysis to identify key support and resistance levels to place trading positions. Other strategies include using stop losses to minimize losses and trailing stops to lock in gains when market conditions shift. Trading during low volatility periods requires patience, consistency and a willingness to take calculated risks.

Pro Tip: It’s important to remain disciplined with your trading plan during low volatility periods. Avoid overtrading or entering positions solely out of boredom or frustration. Stick to your strategy and trust the process.

Stick with the classics and avoid the exotic: trading with common currency pairs can help you steer clear of high spreads and unexpected losses.

Avoiding Exotic Currency Pairs

For traders, avoiding exotic currency pairs could be a wise move. Due to their low trading volume and high volatility, they often have a wider spread than major or minor forex pairs. This means higher transaction costs which can eat into profits. Moreover, price movements of these currency pairs are harder to predict due to their low liquidity. To protect yourself from the potential risks of these pairs, it is advisable to avoid them altogether while trading unless you have sufficient experience and risk management strategies in place.

In addition to the increased trading costs and reduced predictability of exotic currency pairs that may impact your bottom-line, there are also risks associated with sudden market shocks such as economic data releases or geopolitical events that can further destabilize these already volatile currencies. Therefore, it is best practice for traders to focus on major and minor forex pairs where spreads tend to stay lower and more stable.

If you want to increase your chances of profitable trades while minimizing risk exposure in forex trading, it is crucial to choose the right pair for you. By avoiding exotic currency pairs, you can ensure lower trading costs and higher probability of success. So before taking any action in forex markets, make sure you do your homework and follow our tips mentioned above as part of your trading strategy plan for effective outcomes.

Maximize your profits by trading during overlap periods – the sweet spot where two major markets collide.

Trading During Overlap Periods

One of the hacks to reduce high spread in Forex trading is by trading during overlap periods. This technique involves taking advantage of the time when two major financial markets are open simultaneously, creating higher liquidity and more significant price movements.

  • Increased Volume – Since more traders are involved, there is an increase in trading volume leading to increased liquidity.
  • Higher Price Volatility – Two active financial markets cause currency prices to move rapidly, providing opportunities for profitable trades.
  • Multiple Trading Sessions – Overlap periods allow traders worldwide to participate in Forex trading during their respective hours of the day.

It’s noteworthy that overlap periods generate opportunities for quick profits. Hence, experienced traders use this technique with caution as it may lead to overtrading and increased risk-taking.

Trading during overlap periods is considered a high-risk method as sudden price fluctuations may knock out the stop-loss orders placed by traders. Therefore, it’s essential to keep updated on market developments and master technical analysis strategies.

Several successful Forex traders have attributed their success to correct timing based on overlapping sessions. For instance, John Paulson profited $15 billion from predicting a real estate bubble burst just before the 2008 United States market crash. He accomplished this by staying alert throughout the majority of New York and London trading hours’ substantial overlaps.

Five Facts About Why High Spread is Bad in Forex:

  • ✅ High spread in forex means higher trading costs for traders, leading to reduced profitability. (Source: Investopedia)
  • ✅ High spread can also lead to wider bid-ask spreads, making it harder to execute trades at favorable prices. (Source: BabyPips)
  • ✅ High spread can be a sign of low liquidity, making it harder to enter and exit positions in the market. (Source: DailyFX)
  • ✅ High spread can also be caused by market volatility, which can increase the risk of slippage and requotes. (Source: FXCM)
  • ✅ It is important to choose a forex broker with competitive spreads and execution to optimize trading performance. (Source: Forex.com)

FAQs about Why Is High Spread Is Bad In Forex?

Q: What is high spread in Forex trading?

A: Spread is the difference between the quoted price and the buy price of a currency pair in Forex trading. When this difference is high, it is referred to as high spread. It is unfavorable for traders as it means they have to pay more to enter a position, thereby increasing their cost of position.

Q: What causes high spread in Forex trading?

A: High spread in Forex trading can be caused by various factors such as economic uncertainty, political uncertainty, and large banks and dealers imposing variable spreads. In addition, high frequency traders and trading systems may also contribute to high spreads due to the number of decimal positions in the quotes.

Q: What are the disadvantages of high spread in Forex trading?

A: High spread in Forex trading reduces the cost-effectiveness of taking positions as it increases the cost of entering and exiting trades. This also affects margin calls, which can lead to increased losses for traders. Additionally, high spreads may result in slippage, which is a difference between the desired execution price and the actual execution price of the trade.

Q: Are there any advantages of high spread in Forex trading?

A: In some instances, high spread can be advantageous for Forex traders. For example, an inverted spread, where the bid price is higher than the ask price, can indicate that the market is about to reverse. Additionally, some traders may prefer variable spreads as they can provide more value during times of high volatility.

Q: How does the JPY currency affect high spread in Forex trading?

A: The JPY currency is typically traded in pairs with other major currency pairs, and it is known for having a low spread. However, during times of market volatility, the spread on JPY pairs can increase significantly, making it more challenging for traders to execute positions with low costs.

Q: How do monetary policies impact high spread in Forex trading?

A: Monetary policies of central banks can have a significant impact on high spread in Forex trading. For example, a central bank easing monetary policy can lead to a decline in the currency’s value, which can result in a wider spread. Similarly, if a central bank tightens monetary policy, this can lead to a decrease in spread as the currency’s value strengthens.

Phoebe Hall

I started investing and got involved with the money markets around 2019. This isn't a full time job for me, more so a hobby and an industry I'm incredibly passionate about. Alongside speculating within the markets, I write content financial blogs in the industry.

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