What are trading spreads?
In online trading, spread is the difference between the askand the bid price of a . In , it is usually measured in .
In market theory, the spread is the difference between the currently highest price a bidder is offering and the currently lowest price a seller is asking for. As different bidders and askers might only be willing to buy certain, and because there are small time delays in the market prices, the spread is in practice influenced by a large set of .
This is also the reason why in verymarkets — markets with many active traders — the spread is usually much lower than in markets that are not very liquid.
In forex trading, this has the effect that often, the spread is lowest on(trading and ), as it is the most traded .
usually take a markup on the spread as their source of revenue. The spread is a part of the for every trader. That is why the spread on different financial instruments and is an important factor when choosing a broker.
If you are new to trading and want to chose the right broker, we recommend you to read this article first:
More on spreads
Let's consider an example of a spread.
If the price of the EUR/USD is listed as bid 1.0000 and ask 1.0001, the seller would be able to sell their position at 1.0000 while a buyer would have to pay the price of 1.0001. This means the currency spread in this case is 0.0001. The usual measure for the spread is pips and so the spread would be 1 pip.
There are two types of spread: fixed and floating.
A fixed spread refers to a fixed number of pips set as a spread by a broker. The spread does not change, even during the release ofand Asian forex trading session activity.
Variable or floating spread
A floating spread means that the number of pips you pay as a spread are subject to change by a broker. For instance, if you enter a buy order at a particular time in the day, then the spread may be 2 pips. During heightened periods of, such as when a news report is released or low periods of low volume such as the Asian session, the spread may increase to 3 or 4 pips.
Read more about the basic terms in trading: