A:

The high amounts of leverage commonly found in the forex market can offer investors the potential to make big gains, but also to suffer large losses. For this reason, investors should employ an effective trading strategy that includes both stop and limit orders to manage their positions.

Stop and limit orders in the forex market are essentially used the same way as investors use them in the stock market. A limit order allows an investor to set the minimum or maximum price at which they would like to buy or sell, while a stop order allows an investor to specify the particular price at which they would like to buy or sell.

An investor with a long position can set a limit order at a price above the current market price to take profit and a stop order below the current market price to attempt to cap the loss on the position. An investor with a short position will set a limit price below the current price as the initial target and also use a stop order above the current price to manage risk.

There are no rules that regulate how investors can use stop and limit orders to manage their positions. Deciding where to put these control orders is a personal decision because each investor has a different risk tolerance. Some investors may decide that they are willing to incur a 30- or 40-pip loss on their position, while other, more risk averse investors may limit themselves to only a 10-pip loss.

Although where an investor puts stop and limit orders is not regulated, investors should ensure that they are not too strict with their price limitations. If the price of the orders is too tight, they will be constantly filled due to market volatility. Stop orders should be placed at levels that allow for the price to rebound in a profitable direction while still providing protection from excessive loss. Conversely, limit or take-profit orders should not be placed so far from the current trading price that it represents an unrealistic move in the price of the currency pair.

To learn more, see The Stop-Loss Order - Make Sure You Use It, Limiting Losses and A Primer On The Forex Market.

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