There are several things you will need to know when you ask the question "how to start forex trading". Whilst the principles of forex trading are fairly easy to grasp, the markets are full of pitfalls for the unwary beginner forex trader. Make sure that you give your forex currency trading career the best chance of success by following these simple tips.
Start with a demo account
I know, you're eager to earn money but a demo account allows you to get used to the trading platform software as well as the fluctuations in the various markets. Most brokers offer a demo account and most of these use the popular Metatrader trading platform, which is highly customizable and well supported.
Specialize in a couple of currency pairs
It's tempting to play every different currency pair but, as with most things in life, it pays to specialize. When you take the time to study two currency pairs, you'll begin to instinctively know how they react against each other. For instance, you might choose the British Pound vs the US Dollar (often referred to as 'Cable') and the Euro vs the Japanese Yen. That way you can keep your risks spread. Take your time to see how your chosen currency pairs react against each other, the kind of fluctuations they experience and how they react to news items.
Watch the news
Certain news announcements affect the forex markets. Whilst you may prefer to trade on a technical analysis basis, you will still need to heed the news. Certain announcements affect currencies so you may prefer to avoid trading at these times as they can make the markets volatile. There are various calendars available on the web which give you timings of these news announcements and the likely severity they will hold on the markets.
Sure, the adverts on various forex trading websites make a big play about how much money you can earn with foreign currency trading but you're far better off starting with a small account and working your way up than you are with cashing in your life savings to invest in foreign currency trading. There's plenty of time and there are always more trades available, especially as the forex markets are open 24 hours a day for five days a week. You're far, far, better off being the tortoise in this race than the hare. OK, you may not be driving round in a Ferrari for another year or two but you'll still be trading. Small also goes for the amount of your bank that you use on each trade - half a percent may not sound like much but when you're trading lots of times a day even that relatively small figure mounts up. When you get your trades right, the upside potential is high even with a relatively small percentage of your bank.
This is maybe one of the most difficult parts of trading. Beware the urge to take revenge on the market after you've had a few losing trades. Stay cool - you can't win every forex trade. Things will turn but if you're not acting rationally then it's much better to take a break. Poker players do this all the time and so do most of the top forex currency traders. Knowing when not to place a trade is at least as valuable as knowing when to go short or long on your chosen currency pair.