Pips are a critical element in forex trading. They are used to measure the price movement of currency pairs in the foreign exchange market. Understanding how to calculate pips is essential for forex traders because it helps them to determine their potential profit or loss, manage risk, and make informed trading decisions. This article will explain what pips are, how to calculate them, and how to use them in forex trading.
What are Pips?
A pip is the smallest unit of price movement in the forex market. It stands for “Percentage in Point” or “Price Interest Point.” One pip represents the fourth decimal place in the exchange rate of currency pairs. For example, if the EUR/USD currency pair moves from 1.1234 to 1.1235, that is a one pip movement. In general, the value of a pip is determined by the size of the trade and the currency pair being traded.
How to Calculate Pips
Calculating pips is relatively straightforward. The formula for calculating pips is as follows:
Pip Value = (Pip in decimal places x Trade Size) / Exchange Rate
Let’s break this down step by step.
Step 1: Determine the Pip in Decimal Places
The pip in decimal places is the fourth digit after the decimal point in the exchange rate of the currency pair. For example, if the exchange rate of the EUR/USD pair is 1.1234, the pip in decimal places would be 0.0001.
Step 2: Determine the Trade Size
The trade size is the amount of currency being traded. It is measured in lots, with one lot being the equivalent of 100,000 units of the base currency. For example, if you are trading one lot of EUR/USD, you are trading 100,000 euros.
Step 3: Determine the Exchange Rate
The exchange rate is the price at which the currency pair is being traded. It is the value of the base currency in relation to the quote currency. For example, if the exchange rate of the EUR/USD pair is 1.1234, it means that one euro is worth 1.1234 US dollars.
Step 4: Calculate the Pip Value
Using the formula above, we can calculate the pip value:
Pip Value = (0.0001 x 100,000) / 1.1234 = 8.90 USD
This means that for every pip movement in the EUR/USD pair, the value of one lot is changing by 8.90 USD.
How to Use Pips in Forex Trading
Pips are essential in forex trading because they help traders to understand the potential profit or loss of a trade. For example, if you are trading one lot of EUR/USD and the exchange rate moves by 50 pips in your favor, your profit would be:
Profit = 50 pips x 8.90 USD = 445 USD
Similarly, if the exchange rate moves against you by 50 pips, your loss would be:
Loss = 50 pips x 8.90 USD = 445 USD
Knowing the potential profit or loss of a trade is crucial for managing risk and making informed trading decisions. Traders can use pips to set stop-loss and take-profit levels, which are orders that automatically close a trade at a predetermined price. For example, if you are trading one lot of EUR/USD and you want to set a stop-loss at 50 pips below your entry price, you would set it at:
Stop-Loss = Entry Price – 50 pips = 1.1234 – 0.0050 = 1.1184
Likewise, if you want to set a take-profit level at 100 pips above your entry price, you would set it at:
Take-Profit = Entry Price + 100 pips = 1.1234 + 0.0100 = 1.1334
Pips are a critical element in forex trading. They are used to measure the price movement of currency pairs and help traders to understand the potential profit or loss of a trade. Calculating pips is relatively straightforward, and traders can use them to manage risk and make informed trading decisions. It is essential to understand how to calculate pips to become a successful forex trader.