Monday, February 16, 2009

How to select a Forex Broker

The decision of which brokerage firm is best for you is as important in the Forex market as it is in the Stock Market. The way of evaluating the various firms differs slightly between the two markets, however. Forex trades do not involve commissions, but they do have what are known as spreads, which is the difference between the price a currency can be purchased and the price for which it can be sold at a given point in time.

This spread (which is expressed in "pips") is how the brokerage makes its money, so it serves the same purpose for them as a commission. You can be pretty certain that the spreads vary between brokerage firms just as widely as commissions do in the Stock Market, so investigate this carefully before making your selection.

Most brokerages dealing with the Forex market are involved with large financial institutions where the funds are available to provide sufficient leverage for their clients. It is still important to make sure your firm is reliable. They should be registered as a FCM (Futures Commission Merchant), and regulated by the CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission).

Most firms offer widely varied packages of tools that assist you in making trading decisions and understanding the market better. They provide information and research that is available to you in many different formats. It is wise to take a little time to study these tools, and to find the ones that are most helpful to you. They are going to end up being very important and you need to be comfortable with them.

Look for a firm with a wide variety of account and leverage options. The ability to use the Forex market's advantages in leverage is one of the things that makes it the most attractive to you as an investor, and you want to have the maximum flexibility here. Although there are a few unethical firms operating, a few references and inquires should be able to identify them. This selection process is worth a little effort and an investment of time. It is an investment that is going to the most likely to pay off.

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