Is it just me, or have the forex markets been exceptionally sluggish so far this Dec?

Is it just me, or have the forex markets been exceptionally sluggish so far this december? I am currently focusing on news trading, just as I did in July/August (took a break for other commitments after that), and it seems to me that for most news releases the prices don’t move as much as they used to. It also seems that even for the most ranging hours (when there are no news release for that pair in question), the prices no longer range as much, but either consolidate or sluggishly go one way bias. Its just feels so quiet. Anyone interested to discuss about this; feel the same way? Is it because this point of time is monumental because of the fiscal cliff? Or has it always been this way, simply because traders tend to take their kids for holiday in december? Or is it just that the broker I’m with - fxpro - raised its spread? But do you guys feel this - the forex market, moved by the global economy atmosphere, is becoming more and more uncertain? Or is it that depending on the general global economic situation, certain months or years are more certain and profitable to trade in? I think 2011 july to august was a such a period. Actually the volume indicator for EURUSD, for example, shows the volume was so high and sustained then compared to what we have now. I could actually double my account (i’m still trading on a demo basis before i’m ready) on a daily basis at that time. Anyone who came across books or websites that discusses this, can you recommend?


In my experience I can say the pairs moves based on Price Action. Not the news. News will give volatility and rapid movement in a given script but for a little time. Then it back to the main trend and follow the Price action.

Currency pairs move always either direction. I didn’t noticed the market is slow. For Instance take EUR/USD. The pair moved daily 50-70 pips average this month so far. Is it slow? Nope (IMO). See Daily chart. Again See JPY pairs.

I heard a lot of opinion that people saying December will be a dead month and might not get any trade setups etc. etc. It gave me a prejudice just F**k off from the market. And I fear to take trades as I took previous months. Every month has opportunities. But you have an eye to catch them.

But hey, after 20th December take a break anyway from the market because Christmas and New Year. The 20th December will be last day of trading this year and most of the traders book their profit and close their Shop.


THE WORLD MIGHT END 21st DECEMBER… !!! :smiley: :stuck_out_tongue:


It should. Cuz i’ve blown my account already.

Seasonal crazyness

December Month is known for Festival Time that is why it happens.

December is the usual lull period for Forex trading where market volume becomes very thin. This is caused by fewer participants in the market, as many traders from banking institutions and major commercial companies take their holidays at this time of the year.

I can’t be the only one making pips this month. Sluggish or not, there’s still plenty of opportunity.

Okay, to answer this question, I need more info from you. Do you try to trade often? How many times a week? If you answered yes, and more than 10 pairs per week, you would probably notice a slowdown. However, this slowdown may actually be a product of you becomming a better trader. When I first started, I would everage around 20 pairs a week. As my understanding of how the market works, and a better personal trading strategy developed, now I trade maybe 6-8 pairs a week. But, they are much better timed, quality, and productive trades. You say you trade on the news. So do I, exclusively. But, other technical indicators need to be factored in as well. As far as the market itself being sluggish, nope! There are opportunities abound, everyday.

Yes, the workers are off alot during this time frame. However, they don’t control the market, the Central Banks of the world do. When you see a pair gain or lose 100+ pips, that’s not everyday traders and major companies moving the market, it is the banks making their play. Watch closely at the end and beginning of the weeks and months. This in my experience, is the best opportunity to see exactly who runs the show, and capitalize along with them. They will be either taking profits, or setting up for the next week/month, depending on the condition of thiers, or their counter currencys’ economic state.

It is not just a December slow down, daily ATRs on almost every pair I look at (majors, crosses and exotics alike) have been trending down over the last few months.

A few examples:
AUD/CAD 112 in Oct 2011, now 55
AUD/NZD 130 in Aug 2011, now 59
EUR/AUD 155 in Oct 2011, now 81
EUR/GBP 82 in Oct 2011, now 41
EUR/USD 187 in Nov 11, now 89
GBP/JPY 173 in Apr 11, low of 102 in Oct, now an exciting 108 - Formerly the must trade for newbie BabyPippers
GBP/NZD 286 in Oct 11, now 136
USD/CAD 125 in Oct 11, now 49

Believe it or not…I am only been trading for a year . This month of December is my very best month ever!! I am at +153 pips only trading 1 pair (EUR/USD) and may target is only 100 pips a month consistent. I only have 1 losing day for -10 pips last week.

I agree… December is a slow crazy month :)…I LOVE IT!!!


Same here, my target is 25 pips a week so I don’t need a lot movement in the market to stay consistent. I just look for the one optimal entry a week that’s going to get me 25 pips. Usually it is the LO on Tuesday or Thursday. I live in Alaska so the LO is conducive to my timezone. Sometimes I get lucky at work and jump on a momentum trend during the US session. Similar to the GPB/JPY move yesterday.

I was in your situation not too long ago. I use to trade just the “news releases”. I’ve got good trades from time to time but I lose more than I win. So, I step back a few months to reevaluate how I trade. I understand that I need to incorporate some technical analysis on my fundamental analysis. I figure I cannot trade just news releases alone. I need to know where this price is heading.

I re learn how to use Support and Resistance, Price action, Fractals, and looking at Higher time frames such as Monthly, Weekly, Daily, 4 hr., 1 hr. chart. For me, I think S&R is the best tools I can learn for a beginner. Knowing the “Key” Support and Resistance will give me an edge where the price is going…that alone will give me an idea then I can incorporate that with other tools (Fib., fractals, etc.)…

Right now, I am seeing great results that to me I am still surprise. I know it is not perfect and it takes a while to hone these skills…

I think you should step back for now and reevaluate how you trade. I hope you keep your trading journal so you know what are the mistakes that you’ve made so you can correct them.

Trading news releases alone won’t get you far ahead …I’ve been there and I am not going back.

Haha excuse me for speaking out of turn, but you do know that fundamentals DO actually dictate where price is going? :wink:

On topic though, the FX market is definitely quieter than previously, maybe because bank trading took a heavy knock after the Dodd Frank Reform Bill. That cuts out a fair amount of liquidity given the fact that banks retain such massive reserves and don’t trade for themselves. Just a guess though. It could also be the fact that people are on holiday mode as you pointed out.

Well, in my own view, fundamental (specially news releases) creates volatility , no?

I am still evolving in this new venture…

Hmmmm… Gee I guess the 60 pips I just made in 5 mins from the NZD GDP this afternoon didn’t get me that far ahead…

Fundamentals are harder to understand… And beginners like gravitating to chart patterns and indicators… That is a reason why most beginners suck at trading, ignoring what causes price to move is the biggest mistake traders make

So, how do you trade fundamentals without incorporating it with chart patterns and other tools? Do you just place an order when the news comes?.. curious to know…

In the case of this afternoon yes… Researched the release for the last few days, read numerous reports and economic indicators which gave an idea of which direction the release would go… chose a pair that would be most favorable… And placed the trade an hour before the release… No indicators or patterns were considered.

I see… so where do you place your SL and TP? Do you manually exit out for a certain amount of pips (win/lose)? When do you know when it is time to get in and get out of the trade?

Thanks for the above reply, by the way.

Today I used a swing low on the 5 min chart as my SL barrier and placed the SL just behind it… It was a 15 pip SL and I went in without a TP, took about 15 seconds after the release to move the 60 pips and I closed about 30 seconds after the release.

As far as knowing when to get out… SL should be firm and set beforehand… TPs should be based on the scale of release, market conditions, and behavior of the reaction…