For a foreign exchange (forex) trader, the trade size or position size decides the profit he makes more than the exit and entry points while day trading forex. Even if the trader has the best forex trading strategy, he takes too little risk or too much risk if the trade size is very small or huge. Traders should avoid taking too much risk since they will lose all their money. Some tips on how the trader should Determine Position Size are provided.
A lot in forex represents the measure of position size of each trade. A micro-lot consists of 1000 units of currency, a mini-lot of 10.000 units, and a standard lot has 100,000 units. The forex trader’s risk can be divided into account risk and trade risk. All these factors are considered to determine the correct position size, irrespective of the market conditions, trading strategy, or setup.
The standard size for a lot is 100,000 units of currency, and now, there are also mini, micro, and nano lot sizes that are 10,000, 1,000, and 100 units.
Some brokers show quantity in “lots”, while other brokers show the actual currency units.As you may already know, the change in a currency value relative to another is measured in “pips,” which is a very, very small percentage of a unit of currency’s value.
To take advantage of this minute change in value, you need to trade large amounts of a particular currency in order to see any significant profit or loss.
Let’s assume we will be using a 100,000 unit (standard) lot size. We will now recalculate some examples to see how it affects the pip value.
- USD/JPY at an exchange rate of 119.80: (.01 / 119.80) x 100,000 = $8.34 per pip
- USD/CHF at an exchange rate of 1.4555: (.0001 / 1.4555) x 100,000 = $6.87 per pip
In cases where the U.S. dollar is not quoted first, the formula is slightly different.
- EUR/USD at an exchange rate of 1.1930: (.0001 / 1.1930) X 100,000 = 8.38 x 1.1930 = $9.99734 rounded up will be $10 per pip
- GBP/USD at an exchange rate of 1.8040: (.0001 / 1.8040) x 100,000 = 5.54 x 1.8040 = 9.99416 rounded up will be $10 per pip.
Here are examples of pip values for EUR/USD and USD/JPY, depending on lot size.
Your broker may have a different convention for calculating pip values relative to lot size but whatever way they do it, they’ll be able to tell you what the pip value is for the currency you are trading at that particular time.
In other words, they do all the math calculations for you!
As the market moves, so will the pip value depending on what currency you are currently trading.
Forex lots summed up
To trade forex effectively, you need to understand lots. Here’s a reminder of what lots in forex are and why they are important:
- Forex lots are units of measurement. They determine how many units of a currency you’re buying
- You can buy four types of lots in forex: standard, mini, micro, and nano
- Your position size is determined by the lot size, and the number or lots you buy or sell