An Introduction to Forex Dealing

How much do you really know about the work that goes into a forex trade? FXTM’s Senior Staff Writer Samantha Robb takes you on a behind-the-scenes tour of forex, deep into the world of the Dealing department, to introduce you to the experts that work 24 hours-a-day, 5 days-a-week to ensure your trades get executed.

Is a Forex Trader the same as a Forex Dealer?

The short answer? No. A forex trader is a completely different beast to a dealer. Traders make decisions about what to buy or sell, placing orders based on how they think the market is likely to move. They then take home the profits – and the losses – when those trades are closed.

The dealer, on the other hand, doesn’t get involved until a trade order is placed. It’s his (or her) job to facilitate the trader’s order and act as a kind of mediator between the trader and the market, although the task is a little more complicated than it sounds. Whether situated in a bank or a broker, it is the responsibility of the Dealing Department to optimise the trading environment - these are the guys that liquidity, execution speeds and a hundred other factors depend on. 

Dealers have to monitor the markets closely. A typical Dealing room looks more like a ‘mission control’ set from a Sci-Fi movie, with ten, twenty or even fifty dealers receiving a wealth of information to help them optimise the trading environment. This data includes everything from economic developments that could influence investor sentiment to up-to-date market movements. It is the dealer’s job to anticipate any sudden market movements and ensure their traders have the resources available to navigate them.

What makes a good Forex Dealer?

Dealing forex is not an easy job - it’s mentally and physically demanding. The market is open 24/5 – and, therefore, so is the Dealing Department. As a result, Dealers can find themselves working odd shifts. “Exercise and a healthy diet is the best way to ensure you have the energy you need to withstand the rigors of the job,” explains FXTM’s Global Head of Dealing, Charis Mountis, “but I love the fast-paced nature of my work - I wouldn’t want to do anything else!”

Dealing also requires a very specialised skillset. “We typically hire people with analytics, engineering, or mathematics backgrounds,” says Mountis. “It’s a very technical job. The environment is also incredibly pressured – this is a high stakes role with a lot of responsibility. You have to assimilate a huge amount of data, analyse it and make decisions very quickly. Most importantly, dealers have to be able to remain calm under pressure.”

Market movements are governed by a host of factors. Newly released trade figures, central bank decisions, and political news can all have an impact on the currency and commodity markets. The Dealing Department is responsible for anticipating which future events might result in market volatility or low liquidity, and alerting traders accordingly. As well as this proactive approach, Dealing also needs to be reactive. Flash crashes, political scandals or natural disasters can all spark sudden market changes.

Regardless of where they are based, every Dealing Department has access to the same information, and the decisions of the people in that room have the potential to impact their traders. Speed is critical. Even on a relatively slow day in the markets, the Dealing department is still working as fast as possible to avoid slippage and deliver the best experience for its traders.

“Well, I might be biased,” says Mountis, “But I believe my dealers at FXTM are some of the best in the industry. We have phenomenally high trader satisfaction scores and very fast execution speeds.”

Want to find out more about the Dealing Department at FXTM and the role they play in the success of this global award-winning broker? Check out FXTM’s latest video, Beyond the Track, and meet the team behind your trades. 

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