Recession Fears Reignite Safe Haven Buying

Drops in U.S. equity markets rattled investors as both the Dollar and the Yen benefited from traders unwilling to take on further risks. The price of Crude Oil also plunged due to further signs the U.S. economy has yet to turn the corner.

USD - Drop in Equities Leads to a Higher Dollar

The Dollar continued its bullish run yesterday, appreciating for the 6th day in a row against the EUR as the pair reached a one-month low. Driving the Dollar's gains were losses in U.S. equity markets which were sparked by renewed banking fears and worries of a delayed U.S. economic recovery. At the end of the day Monday, the EUR was at $1.2907 from 1.3008. The British Pound was at $1.4482 from 1.4470

The greenback appreciated during most of the day's trading, but the gains accelerated after first quarter earnings reported from Bank of America sparked renewed tension in the banking sector. Heavy losses were seen in U.S. equity markets as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 3.56%. This prompted traders to move from positions of higher yielding currencies to more safe-haven bets such as the U.S. Dollar and the Japanese Yen.

The losses seen in the Dollar as the Fed unveiled its quantitative easing program have been erased as the Dollar experiences another bullish run under a period of less risk taking. Higher equity losses have reduced trader's appetite for riskier currencies, lending strength to the Dollar. This trend could see its first reversal today as Treasury Secretary Geithner is scheduled to speak at 2:00pm GMT. Testimony from Geithner often leads to periods of high volatility in the forex market. The EUR/USD could strengthen above the 1.3000 mark again later today after his speech.

EUR - EUR Continues to Decline Against the Pound and Dollar

The EUR continues to weaken amid further loses in equity markets and reduced risk levels in the currency market. The EUR/USD has now shed all of its gains since the U.S. Federal Reserve began its program of quantitative easing 1-month ago. Some market analysts believe the depreciation of the EUR coincides with the strengthening of the corporate bond market that also occurred three weeks ago. For the past three weeks the EUR has shed 4% against the Dollar and 2% against the GBP.

This losing trend for the EUR versus the Pound could continue today as key economic data is due to be released from both the Euro-Zone and Britain. German ZEW Economic Sentiment is forecasted to make a large improvement from the previous reading while important inflation data will be eyed from England. Yearly CPI is measured against the target rate of inflation set by the Bank of England (BoE). The BoE appears to be ahead of the curve in setting monetary policy. The inflation numbers may come in line and help to strengthen the Pound today, perhaps to the 0.8825 level.

JPY - Less Risk Taking Helps the Yen Rise Across the Board

The Japanese Yen was a big benefactor from yesterday's flight to safety as the JPY made considerable gains against its major crosses. Declines in U.S. equities had traders scrambling to readjust their positions as market participants sold higher yielding currencies for the safety of the Japanese Yen. This sank the USD/JPY to 97.78 from 99.30. The GBP/JPY fell to 141.64 from 146.69. The EUR/JPY also dropped to 126.21 from 129.29.

Two scenarios could play out in the trading of the Yen today. If declines in equity markets continue for the second day in a row, these may again lower trader's appetite for riskier currencies and boost the Yen. However, yesterday's gains may be short lived due to the release of the Japanese Trade Balance. This economic indicator may show worse than expected results as the Japanese export industry has been severely hurt during the economic recession. Past indicators have shown export numbers dropping dramatically. This has the potential to weaken the Yen in the short term horizon.

Oil - Oil Plunges on Renewed Economic Concerns

The price of Crude Oil plunged today on fears of a deepening economic recession in the U.S. The dramatic sell-off occurred after the release of first quarter earnings from Bank of America. The day ended with the price of Crude Oil trading at $48.64. This was 7% lower than today's opening price.

The sell-off was very characteristic of traders fleeing riskier investments for those that are considered safe havens. Currencies such as the Dollar, the Japanese Yen, and commodities such as Gold and Silver experienced sharp appreciation yesterday. Such a sharp drop in price may have left Crude Oil in an oversold position. The $50 mark may leave some room for profits in Oil trading.

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What is Forex?

If you would go out on a dinner with your friends or family and you mentioned that you were trading on the Forex market most of them wouldn’t know what you were talking about. The worst thing is that most of the Forex traders that join the Forex market don’t know what they are doing. Understanding what Forex is, is the first good step to your success at Forex trading.

The foreign exchange market (Currency, Forex, or FX) is where currency trading takes place. It is where banks and other official institutions facilitate the buying and selling of foreign currencies. Forex transactions typically involve one party purchasing a quantity of one currency in exchange for paying a quantity of another. The foreign exchange market that we see today started evolving during the 1970s when world over countries gradually switched to floating exchange rate from their erstwhile exchange rate regime, which remained fixed as per the Bretton Woods system till 1971.

Today, the Forex market is one of the largest and most liquid financial markets in the world, and includes trading between large banks, central banks, currency speculators, corporations, governments, and other institutions. The average daily volume in the global foreign exchange and related markets is continuously growing. Traditional daily turnover was reported to be over US$3.2 trillion in April 2007 by the Bank for International Settlements. Since then, the market has continued to grow. According to Euromoney's annual Forex Poll, volumes grew a further 41% between 2007 and 2008.

Forex Turnover

Forex Turnover
Main foreign exchange market turnover, 1988 - 2007, measured in billions of USD.
The purpose of Forex market is to facilitate trade and investment. The need for a foreign exchange market arises because of the presence of multifarious international currencies such as US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Yen, etc., and the need for trading in such currencies. Since you aren’t buying anything physical this kind of trading can be confusing. When buying a currency think of it as buying a part in that particular country’s economy because the currency rate reflects the economical situation of the country when compared to others.


List of most popular currencies on the Forex market

Forex used to be a closed market because only the “big boys” because you needed between 10 and 50 million $ to open an account. But today, with the development of internet, online Forex brokers have the possibility to offer their services to “little” traders. All you need to start is a computer, fast internet connection and information which you can find on this page also.

This enormous market is like the dangerous sea where you can meet lots of sharks and dangerous waters but at the same time it is the only one where two weeks of trading can hypothetically bring you $1,000,000 out of $1,000 of initial investment.

This is certainly hypothetically because a lot of newbie traders deal with their trades as gambling, that surely bring them to having nothing in the end. You should always keep the phrase "be careful!" in your mind. This market would give you its profit possibilities only if you learn the basic things hard and make lots of demo trading.

The statistics is that as much as 95% of traders come to losing their money at Forex, 5% have profit and less than 1% of traders make large fortune at Forex. You shouldn't produce, sell or advertise anything trading at Forex. Your assets are your knowledge, experience and a small amount of cash.

This market is a platform for banks, transnational corporations and individual traders to change the currencies they possess into other ones. This is the spot Forex market. At this market you can trade with up to 1:400 leverage which means that you'll get $400 on your account for each dollar invested. So, you can trade with the $400,000 sum having invested $1,000 onto your account.

Forex is unique among other world markets because in any time of day and night, somewhere in the world, a financial centre is open for business, banks and corporations exchange currency all the time, with a little lower frequency during the weekend.

Why to trade on Forex?

1. There is no commission fee for trading at Forex.
2. There is no intermediary, you can trade directly at Forex.
3. Forex is open 24-hours a day.
4. Nobody can influence the market for a longer period.
5. High liquidity.
6. Free demo accounts, analysis and charts.
7. Small accounts that allow everyone to try out his luck.

Hope this has answered a lot of questions you were asking yourself about Forex and that you can now start trading. Also make sure that you check out other articles on this blog which can help you earn your fortune.

Good luck to everyone!