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Friday, August 28, 2009

Slippage In Forex

By Ahmad Hassam

You should know the problem of slippage and how to avoid it if you want to successfully trade the news. Slippage occurs when the price you intend to enter or exit the market is different from your actual transacted price. Currency prices tend to move very fast during highly volatile market conditions. The risk of slippage is usually very high when trading the news.

Placing stop loss or market entry orders under fast moving market conditions do not guarantee anything. These orders do get filled but mostly at different prices than you had intended. Slippage is the biggest problem when the market moves fast. There is no way you can avoid it. Some of it is genuine. During times when too many orders are placed by the traders, most forex brokers cannot offset these orders in the interbank market due to the small amounts involved. They have to take the opposite positions themselves. This gives them the chance to take the excuse of slippage.

Sometimes, these entry orders may even get filled past your stop loss or profit target. This means that you would be left with immediate net loss. Many market makers will wait till after the big move is over. Then they will fill your entry order.

Before filling your entry order with wide slippage, many brokers will fill your stop loss or take profit order. It is a trick that many forex brokers use in order to make profit by filling your position with a negative spread.

Lets make it clear with an example. Imagine your profit limit for the EUR/USD is 1.2594. Your long entry stop for EUR/USD at 1.2564! The forex broker may first fill your take profit at 1.2594 and then fill your long entry stop at 1.2604 with a 40 pips slippage.

Even though your trade would have resulted in a profit if filled at the prices you wanted. But now you have a net realized loss. The forex broker may also fill your stop loss order first if the trade goes against you. Then fill your entry order with slippage after that so as to widen their profits.

Now imagine you had placed your stop loss at 1.2544 and your long entry stop at 1.2564. Your forex broker could first fill your stop loss at 1.2544 and then fill your long entry stop at 1.2594 with a slippage of 30 pips. You now have a net loss of 50 pips due to slippage instead of planned 20 pips loss. You could never imagine that you would end up with a loss of 50 pips.

You should know as an individual trader that your orders will be kept pending till you get stopped out or your profit limit is reached during the release of news when the market moves fast. The more you stand to lose and the more the forex broker stands to make a profit, the larger the slippage you experience. Some forex brokers add slippage to any of your orders to increase their profits during times of fast moving markets when the volatility is high.

Many traders readily accept the risk of slippage. They consider slippage as one of the realities of trading the news. However, they should know that slippage can eat up a huge chunk of profits. In the end slippage can affect their overall profit/loss. You can overcome the problem of slippage through the use of stop-limit entry order. You can read more on it in the next article! - 23212

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