How Does Margin Trading in the Forex Market Work?

Dec 29, 2023 By Susan Kelly

Understanding Margin Accounts

The term "margin account" in its base is borrowing to expand the size of the position. Generally, it is a way to boost the return on investment or trading. For instance, investors typically make use of margin accounts when purchasing stocks. They can borrow money to manage an increased shareholding than they'd be able to control using their capital. Margin accounts are also used by traders who trade currencies on Forex markets.

Margin accounts are provided through brokerage companies to customers. They are updated when the value of the currency fluctuates. To begin trading, traders on the forex market must first open an account through the forex broker or Forex broker online. When an investor can open and funds their account, the margin account is created, and trading can commence.


The investor must first pay money in the margin account before placing a trade. The amount that must be paid is contingent on the margin ratio set by the broker. For example, accounts that trade in 100,000 currencies or more typically have a margin percentage that is one percent or 2%.

For example, for an investor wanting to purchase $100, a one percent margin would mean that $1,000 must be transferred to the bank account. The remainder of the 99% is offered through the broker. How much margin is offered depends on the policy of the company. Additionally, certain brokers require a higher margin for holding positions on weekends due to the added risk of liquidity. If the margin is 1 percent in the week, the amount could increase to 2% during the weekends.

In a margin bank account, the broker holds $1,000 in a deposit kind. If the investor's position gets worse and their losses exceed 1,000, the brokerage can issue an order to close the margin. In this case, the broker typically asks the customer to transfer more money into the account or shut down the position to reduce the risk for both parties. Suppose the account has been unable to recover substantial amounts in volatile markets. In that case, the broker may liquidate the account only to inform the customer afterward that their account is subject to the possibility of a margin call.

Margin Call in Forex

If a trader is in a negative position, the account margin will decrease. If a trader's margin is below 100 percent, it implies that the funds in the account are not enough to meet the trader's margin needs. The trader's equity is below the margin that is used. In this situation, brokers will usually demand that the trader's equity is increased, and the trader will be notified of a margin call. If you have the CMC Markets trading account, the trader will be notified that the value of their account has reached this amount via email and a push message.

If the trader cannot pay their account, some or all of the trader's positions could be canceled. Traders should be wary of any margin calls. Margin calls are avoided by monitoring the margin levels regularly and using stop-loss orders on every trade to limit the risk and ensure that your account is well-funded.

Why Are Margin Calculations Important?

Calculations of margins in Forex are deposits that a trader makes to protect an investment. Consider it as collateral. It's not a cost or expense, but it guarantees that your account can handle the trades you're making. The amount of margin you need to provide completely depends on the amount you're trading. It is important to not over-invest in the margin; otherwise, you'll lose everything if your trades turn out to be untrue. Margin trading is one of the main reasons why stock traders during the 1929's crash were so badly hurt. Be sure to keep this in mind when you are trading.

The formula used to calculate the margin required for trading in forex is very simple. Multiply the value of the transaction in terms of the percentage margin. After that, subtract the margin you used on all trades from the equity remaining within your bank account. The resultant figure is the margin you've left.

Managing the Risks of Margin Trading

When trading with an account margined, traders need to know how to determine what amount of margin is needed for each position if it is not included on the deal tickets automatically. Know the relation between leverage and margin and how an increase in margin needed reduces the amount of leverage available to traders.

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