5 Forex Careers for Financial Professionals

Forex is the biggest trading asset today, with trillions of dollars flowing in and out every day. Just the thought of that amount of money is enough to make you want to consider a career in forex. But a few questions come to mind. Is a forex career going to be financially rewarding? Are my skills right for this market? Are forex trading jobs stress-free?

The forex industry is vast and exciting, especially if you have been trading currencies yourself. You know that some people get wealthy by trading currencies. You might even know them personally. Or you might have been successful in making profits yourself from your trading activities. But you also know that forex is risky. More people lost money in trading than those that gained profit. The ratio is 2:1, where out of three traders, two will lose, and only one will succeed. 

Before you decide to pursue a career in forex trading, let us see the advantages and disadvantages of working in this industry. As with any other profession, it is not a perfect industry. People who built their careers in forex have mixed reactions on this topic. One of the advantages is that you are working in a dynamic environment.

Fluctuations and currency movements happen very fast, sometimes in a matter of minutes or seconds. For the forex professional, this means that there is never a dull moment in trading. There is also a never-ending process of education. You will learn something new every time since many market forces can influence the value of currencies.

And if you want to work abroad, one of the best opportunities is from the forex industry. It is because trading happens all over the world and that the clients come from different countries.

As for the disadvantages, the biggest concern among trading professionals is the irregular working hours. Since trading happens 24 hours a day, the work shift is not the typical 9 am-5 pm. You can even have a graveyard or nighttime schedule that can be a big challenge.

The early hours of three to four in the morning are the usual climax of sleep. It is during this time that night workers cannot resist the urge to sleep. Also, if you have kids, it is hard to adjust your schedule since you must be awake in the daytime when they are active.

It also applies to pet owners. Stress is also present in forex trading jobs. Remember that you are dealing with large amounts of monies that can disappear in a matter of minutes. Any mistake or wrong decision can have consequences.

What are the forex trading jobs that are available for me?

We have just discussed the advantages and disadvantages of forex trading jobs. Now we will look at the top 5 careers in forex trading.

Forex Analysts

This job is also called currency researchers or currency strategists. The primary role of a forex analyst is to research and analyze the different market forces that affect the value of currencies. When they spot a trend, they must write about it. These market forces include political issues, economic events, policy changes, and natural calamities. 

Part of the role of a forex analyst is the development of educational programs and seminars for traders. Webinars, training videos, or reading materials included. The forex analyst also handles marketing activities and PR-related functions. Social media posts, press kits, and events management all fall into the job description of the forex analyst.

Forex analysts must be good at making technical, fundamental, and quantitative analyses. He also needs good communication and writing skills. It is vital to write in a simple, clear, and compelling way. Anything that is not clear or irrelevant is useless to the clients.  

As a minimum requirement, a forex analyst should have a degree in finance or economics. Graduates of other related fields like statistics and market research can also apply in this position. Since brokers will hire you, a basic knowledge of forex is needed. You need trading experience from previous work, or you have been actively trading yourself for at least one year. You will also need good writing and presentation skills to be successful. Lastly, you should be aware of the latest news and trends in economics, politics, and other world events.

Forex Account Manager

This position goes by other names like the institutional trader or professional trader. It guards the money of forex traders and decides on behalf of the clients. Account managers get used by all types of traders. Big banks and institutions, companies, and retail traders all rely on their expertise. It is a sought-after position that has a lot at stake.

First, since they have access to the trading funds, every decision they make can bring large profits or substantial loss of money. Second, they can affect the reputation of the brokerage firm that they represent. You will not trust a broker that has forex account managers that loses the money of their clients consistently and continuously.

Third, it affects his professional career. Building a good reputation in forex trading requires the effective management of funds that rakes in profits. A good forex account manager can get more clients through positive reviews and referrals from previous and current clients.   

Forex account managers must have a bachelor’s degree in business management, economics, or finance. They need prior experience in trading assets with proven results to show that they have successfully managed the funds. In addition, they must be experts in using at least one trading platform.

While most brokers have their trading platforms and differ in some ways, the basic features are common to all. Things like currency listings, charting, and placing orders are present on all platforms. For institutional traders, they must be familiar with other investment assets. These include commodities, derivatives, and options. And they need a solid track record to prove their expertise.

Forex Industry Regulator

Heard of the names CFTC, NFA, CYSEC, FSA? Yes, these are regulators authorized by the state or country to monitor the activities of brokerage firms operating in their jurisdiction. These regulators have a wide range of functions, from licensing brokers to monitoring their activities. They also mediate and resolve conflicts and report to Congress, among other things. 

And because of the wide range of services they offer, they need different specialists for every function. You will see auditors, investigators, lawyers, economists, and futures management specialists in their offices. Here are the various positions available and the minimum qualification for each:

  • Auditors check if the brokers follow regulations and policies set by the law. If you want to be an auditor in these regulatory bodies, you will need a degree in accounting. Since this is a competitive job with many aspiring candidates, a master’s education and CPA license will help you get ahead of the rest. 
  • Economists look at the economic indicators and evaluate the effect of rules or policies by the regulator on the economy and the trading industry in general. To qualify, you will need a bachelor’s degree in economics.
  • Lawyers study the compliance, list the violations, and recommend penalties for brokers that do not follow the guidelines and policies of the finance agency or regulator. They must be graduates of law schools and pass the bar exam for practicing lawyers.
  • Futures management specialists handle the supervision of the trade activities of brokers. They investigate allegations of fraud, manipulation, and malpractices. To be a futures management specialist, you need relevant work experience and a degree in fields related to the specific function. 

Exchange Operations Manager

Professionals holding this function are also called forex exchange operations or trade audit associates. They provide back-end support which is vital to the operations of the company. It includes the creation of new trading accounts and the validation of IDs and requirements. It also handles the processing of deposits and withdrawals. They also provide round-the-clock customer support. To qualify, applicants need to be graduates of business management, accounting, or finance. They also need a basic to advanced understanding of the forex market. The more senior positions require previous trading experience.

Forex Platform Developers

These people are the brains behind your favorite trading platform like the MetaTrader 4. They create these programs that allow clients to see the active currencies trading, show forex charts, and place their orders. To qualify, you need a bachelor’s degree in computer science or computer engineering. You will also need working knowledge of the different operating systems, programming languages, databases, and web security protocols. Knowledge of forex trading is not required but is preferred. It is because someone who knows trading will know the common problems of traders so they can address them right away. 

Is forex trading a career?

Forex trading requires time, money, and effort, and you must be willing to spend them to be successful. It is no different from other careers or professions. So, in the simplest terms, yes, forex trading can be a career. But since forex is a huge market, there are several career options within the forex market. We have discussed the five forex trading jobs in the previous section.

How do I get a job in forex?

Most forex jobs come from brokers. Check out the vacancies from the website of the brokerage firms. You can also find the list from job boards like jobstreet.com or LinkedIn careers. For job opportunities with the regulators, visit their website or the government procurement portal in your country.

How much do forex traders make?

The pay scale of forex traders differs from country to country and state by state. The recruitment site ziprecruiter.com says $81,910 is the average annual salary for 2021. It is from the salary brackets of the professionals in the forex market we mentioned earlier. It is equivalent to close to $40 per hour, or less than $7,000 per month. Top earners will earn up to $125,000 per year and get additional bonuses depending on their trading performance and credentials.