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Trading Tools

Trading holidays

In order to predict the behavior of financial markets it is important to be aware of both public trading holidays and clearing holidays when no settlements are made. This will allow you to plan your trading for weeks ahead.

Trading on margin

Trading on margin basically means borrowing money from your broker to buy an asset. It allows traders buy more assets than they could afford with their own invested capital. The money that needs to be deposited in the account prior to any financial operations is agreed upon between the investor and the broker. For instance, if a margin were 1%, you would need to deposit $1,000 to trade $100,000 worth of currency units. The broker would provide the rest.

Economic calendar

The economic calendar is a necessary part of a trader’s routine. It gives information about all the events and news that impact financial markets such as economic indicators and monetary policy decisions. The calendar will also list a volatility level for each event.

Rollover

Rollover is extending the settlement (payout) of an open position until the next trading day. Beware of instruments that have no specific maturity day and have to be rolled over at regular intervals.

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Currencies

The majority of trades are done with the seven most liquid pairs in the world: EUR/USD (euro/dollar), USD/JPY (dollar/Japanese yen), GBP/USD (British pound/dollar), USD/CHF (dollar/Swiss franc), AUD/USD (Australian dollar/dollar), USD/CAD (dollar/Canadian dollar), NZD/USD (New Zealand dollar/dollar). These pairs and their combinations account for 95% of all speculative trading.

Commodities

Liquidity is what appeals to active commodity traders. Among the most traded commodities in the world are crude oil, coffee, natural gas, gold and wheat.

Indices

Stock indices represent the value of a sector of a country’s stock market calculated through a weighted average of selected stocks. The most popular indices are the Dow Jones Industrial Average, NASDAQ 100 Index, NYSE Composite Index, S&P 500 Index, EURO STOXX 50. All major stock markets have their own indices.