Forex Trading Industry Statistics
Researching the Forex & online trading industry? Below are some interesting statistics, charts, trends, and facts we found on the $5.3 trillion Forex market.
We’ve split the forex statistics into seven sections:
- Forex Market Size Stats
- Currency Stats
- Forex Technology Stats
- Forex Trader Stats
- Forex History
- Forex Broker Stats
- UK Spread Betting Stats
Forex Market Size Stats
1. The global forex trading market is worth $1,934,500,000,000 (that’s $1.93 quadrillion). Put another way, this is 2.5X larger than the global GDP. 1
2. $5.3 trillion dollars per are traded every day in the forex market.1
3. More than 85% of the global forex market transactions happen on only 7 currency pairs known as the majors (EURUSD, USDJPY, GBPUSD, AUDUSD, NZDUSD, USDCAD, USDCHF).2
4. If you spent one dollar every second around the clock, it would take you 31,688 years to spend a trillion dollars. Therefore, to spend $5.3 Trillion, the daily volume of the forex market, would take you 126,118 years.3
5. The volume of retail forex trading represents just 5.5% of the whole foreign exchange market2
6. Forex trading daily volume is about 53 times more than the New York stock exchange.3
7. Deutsche Bank is the world’s largest foreign exchange dealer with over 21% in market share2
8. There are over 170 different currencies around the world today that make up the Forex market.2
9. Forex is the only market that runs for 24 hours per day. 1
10. The Forex market is the most liquid market in the world. 1
11. The Forex market is 12X larger than the futures market and 27X larger than the equities (stock) market.
12. The US Dollar is the most traded currency, being part of almost 90% of global trades.1
13. In May 2017, there were more searches in Google around trading Bitcoin than there were for searches around trading gold or oil, according to Google Trends.
14. The GBP/USD is known as the ‘cable’. Why do we have such a name for it? Simply because, before the creation of global communication satellites and the fiber optic technology, the London and New York stock exchanges were connected by a giant steel cable, immersed in the Atlantic Ocean.1
15. The British Pound (GBP, 11.8%) is the fourth most traded currency1
16. The Euro is the third most traded currency (EUR 33.4%)1
17. The Japanese Yen (JPY, 23%) is the third most traded currency1
18. The Australian Dollar (AUD 8.6 %) is the fifth most traded currency1
19. The Swiss Franc (CHF, 5.2%) is the sixth most traded currency1
20. The Canadian Dollar (CAD 4.6%) is the seventh most traded currency1
21. The Mexican Peso (MXN 2.5%) is the eighth most traded currency1
22. Chinese Renminbi (CNY 2.2%) is the ninth most traded currency1
23. New Zealand Dollar (NZD 1.4%) is the tenth most traded currency1
Forex Technology Stats
24. MT4 is the most popular Forex trading platform in the world. Its closest competitor is MT5, which as the name implies, is also built by MetaTrader.
25. Over 35% of traders search for a broker using a mobile or tablet device.
26. Traders prefer Android over iOS. 56.1% of traders have an Android phone, while 41.8% use iOS. Samsung is the most popular brand among traders using Android.
27. 90% of successful Forex traders these days use robots (sometimes called ‘expert advisors‘) to help them make money.4
28. In Binary options trading every trade lasts from less than 10 minutes to a maximum of 19 minutes.4
29. 85% of traders use Windows Desktop.5
30. Auto trading began in the Chicago Mercantile exchange as early as the 1970’s but became common with retail trading around 1999 when online retail platforms started appearing.3
31. 60% of all Forex transactions are conducted in either the UK (41%) or the United States (19%).3
32. The 5 most popular cross rates, according to research are: EUR/JPY, EUR/GBP, EUR/CHF, GBP/JPY and GBP/CHF.3
Forex Trader Stats
33. A recent research study undertaken by Ph.D. researcher John Forman, reveals that 99.6% of retail Forex traders are unable to achieve more than 4 back-to-back profitable quarters. Sound strategy or not, losses are apparently inevitable3
34. There has been a rise in he number of female traders – 46% more women opened accounts in January – March 2015 than January – March 2014. Despite this, women still only represent 10.9% of all traders, according to our own research here at BrokerNotes.11
35. Traders at getting started at a younger age. 43.5% of traders in 2017 were aged 25-34. This is up by almost 1% compared to 2016.
36. Some banks are known to allocate as much as 20-30% of their funds into the Forex market and generate between 40-60% of their total profits through trading currencies. This is by far their most lucrative endeavour.3
37. The gold standard was set in 1880, the year which many people hold as the start of modern Forex. The amount traded in Forex increased by 10.8% between 1899 and 1913, but holdings of gold experienced an increase in only 6.3%. Clearly, Foreign Exchange began to gain more and more strength.1
38. It was the Bretton Woods agreement that gave way to forex trading. Prior to 1971, speculation in currency markets was not permitted2
39. The world’s first real ‘bank’ was Monte Dei Paschi di Siena founded in 1472 in Tuscany, Italy, and is still in operation today.3
40. By 1913, almost half of global foreign exchange was traded using the Sterling. While the Sterling was the main currency in Forex trading, the most active centers were New York, Berlin and Paris. London, for the most part wasn’t a major player in the trading world until 1914.1
41. While we think of currency markets as a relatively new invention, money changers were first mentioned in the Talmud, which dates back to biblical times. The money changers charged a commission, of course.10
42. The Forex markets, surprisingly, were forced to close sometime during 1972 and March 1973 due to the ineffectiveness of the Bretton Woods Accord and the European Joint Float.3
43. During the 17th and 18th centuries, Amsterdam maintained an active Forex market. Exchange took place between agents and merchants acting in the interest of their respective nations, England and Holland.3
44. The US Federal Reserve only came into existence in 1908. Before that, any US bank could issue their own money.10
Forex Broker Stats
45. The largest company in the industry is IG Index, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange with a market value of around £1 billion. It now has over 72,000 clients worldwide, making approximately one million transactions a month – over 90% of them online.6
46. Approximately 90% of spread betting trades are buying positions.6
47. The average net revenue of a publicly-traded forex broker is $457 million. This is different from the average volume traded per broker (for example, last year London Capital Group reported monthly trading volumes of $38.2 billion but approximately $4 million in revenue per month7.
48. IG reported an 18% rise in third-quarter revenue as traders speculated more because of increased stock market volatility (March 2016).8
UK Spread Betting Stats
49. According to the Financial Times the profile of the average spread better remains white, male, middle-aged and professional. Although IG Index says that about 3,000 people open an account with them each month, spread betting is still not a mainstream activity.6
50. Profits from spread betting are currently free of capital gains/income tax in the UK.7
51. Around 92,000 people in the United Kingdom were spread betting in 2012. About 35,000 people stopped spread betting in the United Kingdom in the year to July 2012 (compared to 32,000 in the same period of July 2011), while around 23,000 traders switched providers. The growth over the period 2009 and 2012 has been modest with just 9,000 new traders.6
52. According to research specialist Investment Trends spread betting client numbers rose to 88,000 in November 2011 compared to 83,000 recorded in October 2010 while those trading CFDs reached 26,000, up from 25,000.6
53. Financial spread betting has been around in the UK and in Ireland for about 40 years but has experienced an impressive rise in popularity in the last decade.6
Disclaimer: Some of the links in this article may use affiliate links, meaning that we receive a commission if you setup an account with a broker after visiting them through our link. These commissions help to cover the costs of running this website, and do not add any extra cost to you (in some cases, it provides you with better rates), as our commission is covered by the broker.