The foreign currency trading market has some of the “largest” characteristics in terms of commercial trade. The currency trading market is so far the largest market in the investment industry, with an average international foreign exchange trading volume of $1.9 trillion daily, according to the April 2004 statistics of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) study. It is composite of the following components:
• 1,300 billion dollars worth of derivatives (the generic term for currency trading investment from which its pay-offs over time are derived from the performance of assets and other factors such as interest and exchange rates or various indices);
• 1,000 billion dollars worth of Forex swaps (over the counter short-term interest rate derivative instrument);
• 600 billion dollars in spot transactions;
• 200 billion dollars in forward contract (a contract between two parties to either buy or sell an asset at an predetermined future point in time); and
• 100 billion dollars worth of Forex option (an option wherein the owner has the right but not the responsibility of exchanging money denominated on a certain currency into another one are a pre-agreed rate of exchange within a specified date).
Another “largest” of the currency trading is in terms of the nature of participants on different currency trades. The trading includes large banking institutions, central banks, multinational corporations, various national governments, currency speculators, and other financial institutions and markets. Add to it the small retail traders which are also a part of the growing currency trading market.
Given the massive cash value traded on a daily basis and the players within the market, currency trading also leads in terms of innovations. The growing number of players inside the market is attributed to the inclusion of Internet technology on the trading activities within the market. Thus, even in nighttime, you will be able to trade foreign currencies with other traders on the other side of this planet. Currency day trading is almost synonymous now to currency night market.
Currency trading over the Internet requires you to have a compatible software to your online trading system. In most cases, especially when you sign up with a currency trading broker, they will provide you with a computer software that you can use in executing various transactions and obtain market information. There are two major classifications of currency trading software—the web-based and the client-based.
The web-based currency trading software is not actually what you will install in your Internet-connected PC unit. Such software will run in your broker’s website and you only need to have a compatible browser installed in your computer system to access the software. On the other hand, the client-based software is installed directly to your computer system. In most cases, you will be able to obtain client-based currency trading software through downloading it on a broker’s website and installing it later on.
The basic currency trading software package will include real time quotes and information as well as letting you to enter and perform trades. In addition, it also provides up-to-date quotes for most foreign currency pairs and will let you to either close or open a position within market prices. Meanwhile, advanced currency trading software will provide you charting capability for your market analysis and evaluation. Whether you prefer web-based or client-based software, just keep in mind that it will be of great help in achieving realistic generated revenue during your currency trading career.