Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 71% of retail investor accounts lose money when spread betting and/or trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Glossary: M

These are common terms used in the financial services industry

Major currency pairs

The most heavily traded currency pairs in the FX market, including: EUR/USD, USD/JPY, GBP/USD and USD/CHF.


CFD trading requires investors to deposit a small percentage of the overall cost that would be required if they were to purchase outright the equivalent product in the physical market. Even though the investor’s outlay is small in comparison to the value of the whole position, the investor will still be exposed to the same potential profit and loss. This means that your potential return on investment is magnified, as are your potential losses. Sometimes called 'variation margin'.

Margin call

A broker's request to an investor using margin to deposit additional funds. Margin calls occur when an account's funds fall to a specific value calculated by the broker, or if one or more of the products bought, effectively with borrowed money, decreased in value past a certain point.


The daily adjustment of an account to reflect accrued profits and losses often required to calculate variations in margins.

Market capitalisation (MCAP)

Market capitalisation refers to the value of a company’s shares. The figure is reached by multiplying the number of shares that have been issued by the current share price. Investors find the MCAP figure useful for determining the size of a company.

Market execution

An order that is executed at the best price available in the market, with no requotes.

Market order

An order that you use to specify the direction and size of a trade, but not the price. This ensures your order will be filled as quickly as possible.


The process of quoting a bid and offer based on speculation, expectation, supply and demand.

Medium-term trading

In the context of CFDs, this refers to strategies where the trader is prepared to hold positions open for longer than one day but where the average duration of open positions would be no more than a few weeks.


The bid plus the offer, divided by two.

Monetary policy

The action of central banks to set interest rates and control the amount of money in an economy, with the aim of keeping inflation and unemployment at acceptable levels.

Moving average

The graphical representation of a smoothed-out price action over a set period of time. Moving averages can help identify a trend, points of entry and potential target levels for stops.

Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD)

A chart indicator used in technical analysis to indicate a potential bullish or bearish trend reversal.