Forex Course

40. Two Different Types Of Spreads In The Forex Market

In the last lesson, we clearly talked about what Spread in forex is and also how it is calculated. In this lesson, we will dig up a little more on the concept of spreads and understand its types.

In Forex, the spread is of two types:

  • Fixed spread
  • Variable/Floating spread

Fixed spreads are typically offered by Dealing Desk brokers, whereas, Variable spreads are offered by No Dealing Desk brokers. Let’s understand both in detail.

Fixed Spreads in Forex

As the name pretty much suggests, Fixed spreads remain the same regardless of the condition of the market. Be it a volatile or non-volatile market, the spread always stays the same.

As mentioned, these spreads are usually offered by Market Makers type of brokers.

Dealing Desk brokers buy a large number of positions from their liquidity providers and then offer these positions to traders (clients). Since the brokers will own these positions, they can control and display the prices to their clients with a fixed spread.

Why choose Fixed Spreads?

  • Fixed spreads do not require a large capital to trade. So, fixed spread brokers offer an alternative for traders who don’t have much cash to begin with.
  • “Fixed” spread itself is an advantage. Fixed spreads make it easy to calculate the transaction costs. And since spreads always remain constant, you will exactly know how much amount you will be paying to the broker for each trade.

Variable Spreads in Forex

Again, as the name suggests, Variable spreads are the spreads that are constantly changing, just like the exchange rates. That is, as and when the bid and ask price changes, the difference between the two changes. This, therefore, changes the spread as well.

This type of spread is offered by Non-Dealing Desk brokers. These brokers obtain the prices from multiple liquidity providers and directly pass on these prices to the traders without the involvement of a dealing desk. This means that NDD brokers do not have control over the spreads. It all depends on the market’s supply and demand and its overall volatility.

As a typical tendency of the market, when there is an economic event, the spreads widen. And same is the case when the market volatility drops.

Advantages of Variable spreads

  • Variable spreads diminish the experience of requotes, where requote is the difference in the price you hit the buy/sell and the price when your order reached the broker. However, this doesn’t mean that you won’t experience slippage.
  • Variable spreads provide transparent pricing, as you will be getting the prices from multiple liquidity providers, which in turn means better prices due to high competition.

If you’re wondering which type of spread you must choose? Well, it completely depends on the type of trader you are. For example, traders with small accounts who trade occasionally can go with a broker that offers fixed spread, whereas, a trader who wants fast execution and also wants to avoid requotes, can look for brokers offering variable spreads. [wp_quiz id=”54986″]


By Reddy Shyam Shankar

I am a professional Price Action retail trader and Speculator with expertise in Risk Management, Trade Management, and Hedging.

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