Daylight Saving Time in the U.S. and Canada

Today the U.S. and Canada changed over to Daylight Saving Time, turning our clocks forward one hour. This means that, beginning on Monday, our business day will start one hour earlier than it did on Friday. This change-over affects traders in every country of the world.

Outside the U.S. and Canada, traders will see a real shift of one hour (earlier) in U.S. and Canadian daily activities; on Monday, according to clocks in London, the New York Stock Exchange will open at 1:30pm GMT, not at 2:30pm GMT, as it did on Friday.

And here in the U.S. and Canada, we will see an apparent shift of one hour (later) in the daily activities of every other country; on Monday, according to clocks in New York, the London Stock Exchange will open at 4am EDT, not at 3am EST, as it did on Friday.

And this is only the first of three changes impacting the 24/5 world of forex trading over the next four weeks. On March 29, Europe, Great Britain, and Russia will go onto DST; and on April 5, the two-thirds of Australia which is presently on DST, will return to Standard Time, and Mexico will go onto DST. Confused? It’s a mess, but we can handle it. For now forget March 29 and April 5.

As for the change which just occured, here’s what you need to know for the next three weeks. If you are outside the U.S. and Canada, anything important to you (such as news releases) happening in the U.S. or Canada will happen one hour earlier than before. And if you are in the U.S. or Canada, anything important to you (such as news) happening anywhere else in the world, will happen one hour later than before. That’s all you really need in order to survive and prosper with Daylight Saving Time. But, if you want more info, keep reading.

Here is a list of current time zones for countries important to forex traders. This list applies to the period March 8 - 28, 2009. Time zones are shown in geographical order, from east to west, beginning at the International Date Line. I have also indicated, for each country, what percentage of world forex volume that country contributes.

GMT + 13 hours: New Zealand (current time zone: NZDT - New Zealand Daylight Time). New Zealand accounts for 0.3% of world forex volume.

GMT + 11 hours: eastern Australia (AEDT - Australian Eastern Daylight Time). Eastern Australia (roughly the eastern third of the continent) includes the financial centers of Sydney and Melbourne. This part of Australia accounts for most of the country’s forex volume. Overall, Australia (including the central and western time zones) accounts for 4.3% of world forex volume.

GMT + 10 hours: central Australia (EST - Eastern Standard Time).

GMT + 9 hours: Western Australia (WDT - Western Daylight Time). Japan (JST - Japanese Standard Time) 6.0% of world forex volume. Korea (KST - Korean Standard Time) 0.8% of world forex volume.

GMT + 8 hours: Taiwan (CST - Chinese Standard Time) 0.4% of world forex volume. Singapore (SGT - Singapore Time) 5.8% of world forex volume. Hong Kong (HKT - Hong Kong Time) 4.4% of world forex volume.

GMT + 5.5 hours: India (IST - Indian Standard Time) 0.9% of world forex volume.

GMT + 3 hours: western Russia (MSK - Moscow Standard Time). Russia covers 11 time zones, but the great majority of Russia’s external financial activity is concentrated in the MSK time zone, which includes Moscow and Saint-Petersburg. Overall, Russia accounts for 1.3% of world forex volume.

GMT + 2 hours: South Africa (SAST - South African Standard Time) 0.3% of world forex volume.

GMT + 1 hour: central Europe (CET - Central European Time). The area known as “Europe” is generally divided politically into Eastern Europe and Western Europe; but, it’s divided geographically into three time zones — eastern, central and western. The Central European Time zone includes the economic engine of Europe: Switzerland, France, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Luxembourg, Sweden, Italy, Norway, Netherlands, Austria, and Spain (listed here according to forex trading volume, not GDP). Overall, this region of Europe accounts for 21.5% of world forex volume.

GMT: Great Britain (GMT - Greenwich Mean Time) 34.1% of world forex volume. Ireland 0.3% of world forex volume.

GMT - 4 hours: U.S. and Canada - eastern time zone (EDT - Eastern Daylight Time). The U.S. comprises six time zones, including Alaska and Hawaii; and Canada comprises six time zones, including the Maritime Provinces and Newfoundland. The U.S. and Canada share the Eastern, Central, Mountain and Pacific time zones. The largest volume of economic activity in both countries takes place in the Eastern Time Zone, which includes the financial centers of New York and Toronto. Therefore, forex traders tend to focus on this time zone as representing the entire North American continent. Overall, the U.S. accounts for 16.6% of world forex volume, and Canada accounts for 1.5%.

GMT - 5 hours: U.S. and Canada - central time zone (CDT - Central Daylight Time).

GMT - 6 hours: U.S. and Canada - mountain time zone (MDT - Mountain Daylight Time). Mexico (CST - Central Standard Time) Mexico accounts for 0.4% of world forex volume.

GMT - 7 hours: U.S. and Canada - Pacific time zone (PDT - Pacific Daylight Time).

GMT - 8 hours: Alaska (AKDT - Alaska Daylight Time).

GMT - 10 hours: Hawaii (HST - Hawaiian Standard Time.


The following countries do not observe Daylight Saving Time: Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, India, and South Africa.

Certain areas of the United States, Canada, and Australia do not observe Daylight Saving Time. In the U.S., Arizona, Hawaii, and the U.S. Virgin Islands remain on Standard Time year-round. In Canada, a large portion of Saskatchewan, and small parts of British Columbia and Quebec remain on Standard Time year-round. And in Australia, the central third of the continent, including Brisbane, remains on Standard Time year-round.

Time zones shown above were verified at: For current local times in thirty different locations worldwide, including most of the locations shown in the list above, go to World Clocks - Time Zones of The World

The percentages shown above were derived from data compiled by the Bank for International Settlements. This data appears in the BIS Triennial Central Bank Survey, December 2007 (the latest report issued). The percentages shown above total 98.9% of world forex volume.

Many traders are surprised to learn that China, with its enormous population, huge economy, and massive monetary reserves, is not a significant contributor to world forex trading volume. According to the BIS, China accounts for only 0.2% of world forex volume.

I hope you find this to be useful.


Please continue to update us as times change around the planet as this is invaluable information.

Thanks again, and good pippin,


allow me, a simple reactor to things around me, to state that the LAST change was a simple disaster for at least a week and probably more

time based trading should be forgotten until all the countries come into some form of compliance with the time, as things get pretty weird for a while.

it straightens out, after a week or so, but its rather funny until the day it finally stops flipping around.



I’ll be glad to update this material as things change (on March 29 and April 5).

Thankfully, after April 5, no more changes until September.

Thanks for the kind words.


Hi, Che

There’s no need to change the way you trade, just because time-changes are occurring. Just adjust your activities to stay in sync with whatever markets you trade. If you like to trade the European opening, which is at 2am (eastern) most of the year, just be aware that between now and Friday, March 27, the opening will occur at 3am (eastern). Then beginning Sunday, March 29, when Europe and the U.K. join us on Daylight Saving Time, we’ll be back to a 2am opening. The Europeans and Brits aren’t going to be doing anything different over the next three weeks; they’re just going be doing it an hour later (according to OUR clocks).

I have written a document which I call The 24-Hour Forex Trading Day, which shows the opening and closing of the business day, the banks, and the stock exchanges in the major forex-trading countries, on an hour-by-hour basis. If that’s something you’d like to see, I can post it, or email it to you. Let me know.


while your information is tremendously good, one must understand that i trade MANY of the openings, and trade many of them while im sound asleep also.

what i refer to is the alternating time periods WITHIN the intraday trading of ANY market, which occurs with amazing regularity and creates the alternating up and down cycles one sees on their charts.

This particular schedule gets “riled up” during this transitional period around the world, and leads to a few mistakes that normally wouldnt be made.

but your information, as i stated, is true and concise — nice work indeed !

PLEASE POST – will enjoy reading !



I’m going to wait until April to post my “24-Hour Forex Trading Day”. If I posted it now, the Daylight Saving Time changes occuring between now and then would create an editing nightmare. I’ll wait til the dust settles.