What is Scalp Trading in Forex?

Forex scalping is a short-term trading method where traders aim to profit from small price changes in the forex market. Scalpers buy and sell currency pairs, holding their positions for only seconds or minutes.

They repeat this process many times daily to benefit from price movements. In the forex market, the smallest price change a currency can make is called a pip (percentage in point). Traders use pips to measure their gains and losses.

Forex scalpers typically try to earn between 5-10 pips per trade, hoping to accumulate a larger profit by the end of the day. This trading style is a type of arbitrage trading.

What does Scalping mean in Forex?

Forex scalping is a short-term strategy designed to profit from small price movements. The most effective forex scalping strategies use leveraged trading. Leverage allows traders to borrow money from a broker, giving them greater market exposure while only needing a small deposit.

This approach can increase profits but also amplify losses if the market moves against the trade. As a result, forex scalpers must continuously monitor the market for any changes.

Forex Price Action Scalping

Price action trading is a technique that doesn’t use indicators. Instead, forex scalpers focus solely on price, analysing elements of technical analysis. They observe candlestick charts and use support and resistance levels, as well as trendlines, to gather information typically derived from technical indicators.

By deeply analysing price movements, traders make informed decisions based on trend continuations, scalping trades only when the risk-reward ratio is favourable.

Forex price action scalping disregards fundamental analysis, relying entirely on technical methods. These traders ignore external factors that could affect currency prices, such as inflation, economic growth, supply and demand, trade status, interest rates, and account balances.

Forex Scalping Signals

In volatile markets, trading signals are generated by software or technical indicators to identify the best times to enter and exit trades. Forex scalping signals are especially crucial due to the quick nature of these trades. Both long-term and short-term signal providers aim to help scalpers by targeting a specific number of pips, highlighting potential opportunities during high volatility or low liquidity periods.

Forex scalping signals are often based on economic events or technical indicators. Most traders use a forex scalping system that gives them access to charts, pips, and technical indicators, as well as trading times for major cities worldwide.

Technical analysts, in particular, study price charts to find opportunities during the busiest times of the day and need to stay highly focused.

fx scalping

Indicators for Forex Scalping

What is the best indicator for forex scalping? Here are some popular indicators available on our online trading platform:

Bollinger Bands

These charts show market volatility, which is useful for rapid trades, typically held for no more than 5 minutes. Bollinger Band scalping is particularly effective for currency pairs with low spreads, as they are less volatile and can yield multiple profits if executed correctly. Examples include EUR/USD, GBP/USD, and EUR/JPY.

Stochastic Oscillators

This indicator helps identify overbought or oversold conditions in the market, allowing scalpers to make informed entry and exit decisions.

Keltner Channels

These are used to demonstrate patterns and trends on price charts by monitoring the online forex market. Keltner channels help traders identify potential breakouts or reversals by analysing the price’s movement within a channel formed by the moving average and a multiple of the average true range (ATR).

Using these indicators, traders can better understand market trends and make more informed scalping decisions.

Moving Averages for Scalping Forex

In forex trading, moving averages are commonly used indicators, particularly for scalping. On a typical Forex graph, you’ll find multiple moving average lines. Two of the most popular ones are:

1. Simple Moving Average (SMA): This indicator calculates the average price over a specific period, helping traders identify trends.

2. Exponential Moving Average (EMA): Unlike the SMA, the EMA gives more weight to recent prices, making it more responsive to new information.

Both SMAs and EMAs are useful for representing short-term price trends of a currency. Moving average graphs are frequently used by professional forex scalpers because they can quickly spot changes in price trends. This rapid identification of trend changes is crucial for successful scalping.

Forex RSI Scalper

The Relative Strength Index (RSI) is a momentum oscillator that helps predict the future direction of the forex market over some time. Short-term traders, such as day traders and scalpers, can adjust the default settings of the RSI to monitor shorter time frames, like minutes, to find the best entry and exit points.

Measuring momentum is useful in the forex market, as it allows traders to develop strategies suited to the current trading environment.

Forex Scalping Tips

When scalping, traders should concentrate on one currency pair or position at a time to increase their chances of success. Managing multiple positions simultaneously can make it difficult to monitor technical charts effectively, leading to a loss of focus.

It is advisable to trade only currency pairs with the highest liquidity and volume. Scalping is a fast-paced activity, so major currency pairs with high liquidity allow traders to enter and exit the market quickly.

Scalpers often have a specific temperament that suits this risky trading method. Scalping requires concentration, analytical skills, and a good amount of patience, enabling scalpers to make quick decisions to make a profit.

Best Pair for Scalping Forex

Traders should consider scalping major currency pairs like EUR/USD, GBP/USD, and AUD/USD, as well as minor pairs like EUR/NZD. These pairs have high trade volumes and tight spreads, which help minimize losses.

Tighter spreads mean that fewer pips are needed for a trade to become profitable. However, more experienced traders might choose to scalp minor or exotic pairs, which usually have higher volatility and greater risks compared to major currency pairs.

Is Forex Scalping Profitable?

The forex market can be volatile, and instead of small price fluctuations, it can sometimes collapse or change direction entirely. This requires scalpers to quickly adjust their strategies to avoid significant losses and ensure subsequent trades can compensate for any losses with greater profits.

Other risks of scalping include entering and exiting trades too late. Volatile price movements between currency pairs are common, and if the market moves against an open position, it can be challenging to close the trade quickly enough to avoid losing capital.

Using a high amount of leverage is also risky. While forex margins can boost profits if trades are successful, they can also magnify losses if trades are poorly executed

A scalper’s concentration and quick decision-making skills are advantageous, allowing them to spot changes immediately and close positions to avoid losses. The longer a position is held, the higher the risk of prices moving outside the scalper’s expected range.

Therefore, most scalpers stick to tighter currency spreads and avoid making bold choices to minimize risk.


Use stops and limits. Stops and limits are essential to ensure that you don’t hold positions for too long, which can be detrimental when scalping. Ideally, you should never open a position without at least a stop in place.

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