EditorEditor: Alison HeyerdahlUpdated: January 23, 2024
AuthorAuthor: Chris Cammack

Last Updated On January 23, 2024

Chris Cammack

The Forex Market Hours

Forex trading can be done almost 24 hours a day, 5 days a week. We say “almost” because you cannot place trades for a few minutes every day at rollover time (1700 New York time).

The duration of rollover depends on the broker you use, but it’s usually between 2-5 minutes. Close to rollover time, the spreads on different currency pairs can be much wider than usual. This makes trading close to rollover time impractical and risky, especially if you use a tight stop loss.

How late does the Forex market open and close?

There are 4 main Forex trading sessions, the Sydney session, the Tokyo session, the London session, and the New York session. The Forex market opens every Sunday at 17:00 New York time (EST in winter and EDT in summer) and closes every Friday at the same time. We use New York time as our benchmark because the market open/close is always at 17:00 in New York, right through the year. 17:00 New York time is the end of the U.S. session; during certain times of the year, it is also the start of the Sydney session.

During the Northern Hemisphere’s winter, when the U.S. session closes at 17:00 EST, it is 22:00 in the UK. When it is summertime in the northern hemisphere, and the U.S. session closes at 17:00 EDT, it is still 22:00 as the UK switches from BST to GMT.*

London Forex Trading Times

The table above is calculated from GMT, which is London time in the winter and London time -1 in the summer.  It is important to know this because many traders start trading when the London session opens or when the London and U.S. sessions overlap.

So, in the UK, the Forex market opens in Sydney and closes in New York at 22:00 in the summer. In the winter, there is an overlap between the Sydney open at 20:00 and the New York close at 22:00.

As you can see in the table above, the best time to trade Forex in the UK is generally between 12:00 (midday) and 17:00. Between 08:00 and 09:00/10:00 is a good time to catch important economic news releases, which can greatly impact the exchange rates. During these hours, the Tokyo session overlaps the London session, and a few hours later, the London session overlaps the U.S. session.

There is often big market participation and good volatility when the London session opens. Likewise, the U.S. session open brings immense trading volume to the market. During these hours, intraday traders have the best chance of getting enough market movement to hit their profit targets. False moves (e.g. fakeouts) are also less common than during the first few hours of the Tokyo and Sydney sessions. Liquidity is also really high, meaning that large positions can be absorbed by the market more easily, with a smaller chance of experiencing slippage or significant market impact.

Although the Forex market is open from Sunday at 17:00 EST/EDT to Friday at 17:00 EST/EDT, it also closes every day for a few minutes from Monday to Thursday at 17:00 EST/EDT for rollover. Soon after rollover, the Sydney trading session starts, and the cycle is repeated. Of course, rollover also takes place when the market closes on Friday.

*To keep it simple, we have only considered U.S. time transitions. In Europe, the transitions between summertime and wintertime only differ a few days from that of the U.S.


Although the Forex market can be traded 24/5, the best market liquidity, volatility, and trading conditions are generally experienced during the crossover between the London and early US sessions. During these sessions, some of the most important central banks, speculators, businesses, financial institutions, commodity markets, and stock markets are active, all of which can have a huge impact on the currency markets.

When the Forex market is most active, spreads are usually low and large orders can be executed effectively. Market movements are also generally more reliable and forceful than during less active market times.

To learn more about the best times to trade Forex, check out our episode on the subject:

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