The forex market can be volatile and instead of showing small price fluctuations, it can occasionally collapse or change direction entirely. This requires the scalper to think with immediate effect on how to ensure that the position does not incur too many losses, and that the subsequent trades make up for any losses with greater profits. Other risks of scalping include entering and exiting the trade too late. Volatile price movements between currency pairs are frequent and if the market starts going against your open position, it can be difficult to close the trade quickly enough before losing capital. The use of a high amount of leverage is also very risky. Forex margins can help to boost profits if scalpers are successful, however, they can also magnify losses if the trades are poorly executed.
The advantage of a scalper’s concentration and personality means that they should be able to spot these changes straight away and close their position in order to avoid losses. The longer the position is held for, the more risk of prices moving outside the scalper’s betting range. Therefore, the majority of scalpers usually stick with the tighter currency spreads and not make too many bold choices in order to minimise risk. A scalping strategy is not advised for beginner traders, due to the level of experience, concentration and knowledge required of the forex market. There is a much higher likelihood of failing positions than of winning positions in these circumstances. Often, more experienced or institutional traders use strategies such as a scalping, arbitrage or high-frequency trading (HFT) to carry out quick transactions.
Putting into place stop-loss orders when currency trading in such volatile conditions can help a trader more effectively managed their risk and losses. When it comes to scalping, this allows traders to set a specific price at which their positions will close out automatically if the market goes in the opposite direction. Given that a scalp trade only lasts a few minutes at most, this prevents the trader from holding onto a sinking position.
Consult our money and risk management guide for more advice.