The Forex Trading hours begin on Sunday Night (Monday Morning in some regions) and run continuously until Friday Night (Saturday Morning, in the Eastern section of the globe). The Forex Trading Hours, unlike in most other markets, run non-stop as at all times throughout the week days there is some region in the world within which banks are open and trading in currencies is taking place. The below table illustrates the different trading hours for the 4 most commonly known regions, of which the majority of Forex trading takes place:
The Forex trading day typically begins with the market opening up in what is known as the Asian session, where the trading hours of Sydney and Hong Kong are the initial trading hours of each day. From then the next session of trading hours takes place in the European session, a large part of the trading of which is in London and the trading hours finish with the United States session which opens in New York and the cycle is repeated for the 5 days in the week. Over the weekend the markets are closed and no trading hours exist as there are no banks open for trading.
As mentioned above the Forex trading hours can be categorized into 3 sessions. These are:
Asian Forex Session:
The Asian session is the first to experience trading each day and its trading hours span over 11 hours due to the fact that the Asian session includes both the trading hours of Tokyo and Sydney. These trading hours are between 17:00 – 04:00 EST. The Tokyo Exchange, in spite of being one of the largest exchanges in the world, only makes up for just over 7%of the each day’s total Forex trading and as such during these trading hours there may be less liquidity in the market and spreads may often be wider than at other trading hours. Needless to say this is the least busy of the three sessions, with the most popular pair being traded during these trading hours being the Japanese Yen against the Dollar and crosses of the Japanese Yen (e.g. EUR/JPY)
European Forex Session:
The second trading session in the day is the European, which takes place between the trading hours of 03:00 – 12:00 EST. At these trading hours the majority of the trading taking place is in London, and the amount of trading that takes place accounts for roughly 32% of the Forex transactions that take place, making the European session a very liquid and eventful session at these trading hours. The fact that also the latter trading hours of the European session overlap with the early trading hours of the New York session, makes the trading hours at the latter half of the European session very sought, due to the high liquidity that is experienced. Typically the most traded pairs during these trading hours are the Euro and Sterling against the Dollar as well as the EUR/GBP cross pair.
United States Forex session:
The last session of each trading day is the US session, which takes place during the trading hours of 08:00-17:00 EST. The US session commences in New York at which time the latter trading hours of the European session are taking place, making the US session open an eventful time in Forex trading. At this overlap, which takes place between the trading hours of 08:00 – 12:00 EST, the Forex market experiences the most activity per hour. The New York trading hours experience roughly 20% of the total Forex trading that takes place.