What Is The Meaning Of Swap In Forex Trading?

Forex trading has a marginal system and is the most popular way of earning in markets. Today we will learn what is swap in forex trading and why it is needed.

What Is Swap In Simple Words?

All experienced traders know that you can get a profit by opening positions. For example, long (buying) or short (selling). To open such a position, we need to deposit our money at the current rate while installing any available options. Stop loss, take profit, and others.

It should be noted that while using swaps on Forex, there are some nuances that every trader should know about even before he starts trading. 

And these nuances directly depend on the interest rates of Central banks for each currency. It might be said that the currency in the pair that is bought, is deposited, while the currency that is sold, is loaned.

The bigger the difference between the rates of these currencies, the more profitable our trading operations will be.

An Example Of Swap In Forex

Let’s consider a real example when we buy the euro and sell the dollar. Here you can see several moments:

– GBP/USD rate was 1/0.67 on May 5th, 2016.

– The long position for 100,000 GBP/USD was opened with a stop loss to return to a breakeven point at 1 001,5 (-3%).

– This swap took place during the opening of this position due to two reasons. During forex trading, it is only profitable and safe only when the market is not too volatile. So we chose a time for the stop loss that would be safe.

Benefits Of Using Swap In Forex

Swap usage depends on the difference in volatility and interest rates between two currencies.

For example, if we did not swap euro and dollar in the way we did before, then our profit would only be $40,000 (1 001.5 x 100,000). But, there is a need in swap during forex trading that gives us 80,000 USD (1 109 – 1 067) for this position.

Swap usage has the following benefits:

  • Swaps allow increasing potential profit
  • It is always possible to close an open position at any moment before its expiration date due to the rules of interbank crediting
  • Using swap helps to avoid a negative balance

One of two things can cause a negative balance. One is that the volatility on both markets is different, and the other is if the interest rates are different between the two currencies.

When a negative balance appears, you can lose all your money deposited on your account unexpectedly due to a “margin call”.

How Is Swap In Forex Calculated?

In credit operations, banks mostly use a system called “swap.” This is mainly regulated by the central bank of different countries. As well as other parameters necessary to calculate the interest rates premiums. 

The implementation of swap usage has been divided into three main types: no change, fixing, and floating.

To clarify the calculation process easier, we offer a simple example that shows how it works: EUR/USD rate was 1 /1.30. We have 100,000 USD at a remuneration rate, 2%.

Let’s imagine that you open a position long (buying) EUR/USD for this money with a stop loss at 1.2800 (-4%) and take profit at 1.3100 (+5%). After one day, our position had moved to the next trade date due to swap usage.

The first two points are as follows:

  • USD/EUR rate (1 /1.30).
  • The second point is “US dollars on the account”, which is 100 000 x (1+2%) = 102,000 USD on the next day.

Now we need to calculate how many US dollars you would receive if the following operations were made:

  • Sell EUR for 102,000 USD
  • Fixing an open position on currency with a rate of 1/1.2800.
  • As a result, you would receive 103,400 USD (102,000 x 1 /1.28).

Thus, in this case, the swap is 0,4%. This example shows that the more volatile one currency pair is, compared to another for which you are opening trading positions. The bigger swaps are going to be when using a marginal system of trading on Forex.

A good trader takes into account all these details and knows when to use swaps during the forex trading process. This way, you won’t have a margin call situation. Or have small losses instead of huge ones because of a negative balance.

Why Is Swap Used?

As we have already mentioned above. Swap is necessary to keep a certain balance of money on your account and avoid a negative balance. 

When a negative balance appears, you can lose all your money. If you have open positions on the next trading date, you need to give the opposite amount of money back. For example, if I had a position of 1,000 x 100,000 and then a negative balance appeared. I would need to return 2,000 x 100 000 in the next trade.

And if such a situation happens during volatile periods when your loss is much higher, you could lose all your deposited money.

Swap is always used when trading with a marginal system on Forex. However, if not implemented by the brokerage company. Traders can use another option to avoid negative balance issues for fixed open positions that are into the next trade date. They can use forward swaps.

This situation happens when currencies of different countries have the same interest rates. Or when there is no difference between volatility on both market sides (for example EUR/USD and USD/JPY).

The forward swap calculation process is based on two factors:

  • The level of leverage
  • Forward points size (the distance between the current price and take-profit/stop-loss level).
  • The forward swap amount is calculated by the formula: Forward points size x Swap level.

You bought 100,000 Euro and set the price to be 1,3370. You will recieve interest on this, at 2%. You want to make a profit but you also want to stop losing money. So you set your take profit level as 1,3450 and your stop loss as the same price but at 1,3330.

The result will be −14 forward points size x 0,02 = −28 USD swap value. This means if you make a margin call and fix an open position in this trade date without using Swap Usage. Or applying the Forward swap calculation process, then you will get less than 102,000 USD. 

Summing it up, a negative balance would appear and you would need to return money for this open position. Otherwise, a “margin call” situation would occur.

Swap Usage During Portfolio Management

Forex trading strategies are always focused on not having a negative balance. You can do this by using the Margin system.

It includes Swap usage and the Forward swap calculation process during portfolio management. To avoid different interest rates between currencies involved in the transaction. Or making calculations based on differences in volatility between currency pairs.

A situation when you can use Swap is if you want to close a position but before that, move it to the next trade date. This might happen because of holidays, or busy periods.

In this case, if you have the money to close your position and it didn’t work. Then you might end up with a negative balance and that might lead to a “margin call.”

What Are Carry Trades & Swap Meaning? & How Can I Make Money With Them?

The words “swap” and “carry” have opposite meanings. A swap is a very common financial arrangement where two parties exchange obligations with one another. A swap could be, for example, an exchange of fixed interest rates for floating ones, or vice versa.

A carry trade is a speculation that you make a difference in interest rates between two countries. You can do this by using a forward contract or a futures contract.

Swaps are sometimes known as “interest rate swaps”. These are arrangements in which two parties exchange the cash flows of a loan for another set of cash flows. An interest rate swap is an agreement between people where they give each other money. They do this at a specified interval based on a notional principal amount.

Interest rate swaps are a way to get either a fixed-rate loan or a floating-rate loan. Companies with variable-rate debts can use this.

Some banks offer fixed rates on bank deposits and floating rates, such as investments in short-term securities. Swaps are a good way to change the type of interest you pay. You can change the combination without actually selling any assets.


There is a big market for swaps. The Bank of International Settlements says the total value of the swap market was $426 trillion as of December 2010.

Since rates are floating, many people want to fix their rates. They do this by swapping the existing ones. There is also an alternative market for fixed-rate debt. These are issued by banks and corporations that want a break from issuing fixed-rate bonds.

On the other hand, if someone borrows money from one country and uses it to buy another country’s currency. This is called a ‘carry trade’. The person with the borrowed money earns interest and makes money if the value of their currency goes up, and not if it goes down. Carry trades are often used when the currency seems too high but the interest rate is still low.

To make a trade, a person needs to have borrowing power in the same country that he or she is trading. With less time and with little money, it is hard to do this.

The other option is to go short on the currency one wants to buy. And use its proceeds from selling it to finance its purchase.

Making Money From A Carry Trade…

A carry trade is when an investor borrows in one currency to invest in another. The trader then pockets the difference in interest rates. This type of trade has been around for years. But it’s become more popular than ever lately because the cash keeps rolling in. 

As of today, there are many currencies with low interest rates. For example, the Japanese yen, Canadian dollar, and the Swiss franc. And that translates into huge profits for investors who can get their hands on these currencies at cheap prices using existing market liquidity or leveraging themselves up if they have the right connections…


What Is Another Word For Swap In Forex?

The term “swap” is used interchangeably with the terms “rollover” or “futures.”

What Is The Difference Between Swap And Rollover?

A swap is an expense or credit for moving an open position to the next day. A rollover is a new deal that happens automatically when you have an old contract. It has the same details as the old contract, but without your agreement. 

A rollover occurs in futures trading. When one party wants to extend the term of an expiring contract while another does not. Typically, either party may request a rollover based on market conditions or strategy decisions.

How Much Do You Pay To Swap Currency In Forex Trading?

Swap rates can change by how much the financial institutions want to charge for different transactions.

Sometimes, the same transaction will cost you more money depending on what is happening in the market.

What Is Swap Rate In Forex Trading?

In the forex market, a swap rate is an interest charge assessed by brokers to traders who hold open positions overnight. A broker may charge either a fixed amount or a variable one. Based on the overnight financing rate in the interbank market for each currency pair.

For traders holding long positions, this cost will be added to their account balance. And paid when they close out their position. For those with short positions, it will be deducted from that account balance. And must be covered via existing cash or other assets before trading again.

Swap rates are not regulated by any government, but they help brokers do their job. Brokers can provide people with credit, which can be very expensive.

What Is The Difference Between Interest And Swap Rates Of Currency In Forex Trading?

In the FOREX market, an interest rate is a number that a broker charges to keep your money for one day. While a swap rate refers to a fee charged when swapping one currency with another (also known as a cross-currency transaction). 

Although interest rates and swaps rates may seem the same. Because they are both related to holding open positions overnight. In reality, the two types of rates are quite different.

Interest rates in forex trading are set by traders. Some people need money to trade their money. They borrow this money from other traders and pay them interest for it.

The rate is either fixed or variable depending on the situation or current market condition. For example, when there are not enough transactions to cover a broker’s costs. He may likely charge a larger interest rate, which compensates him for this cost. 

When there is competition among brokers, they can offer lower interest rates without losing clients. This new attitude might have been adopted because of new technologies. These include online payment systems and trading platforms.

Swap rates are charged when one country swaps its currency with another country. You can also get a broker to do this for you. In both cases, the swap rate is higher than interest rates. This is because swaps have additional costs. 

These include commission fees from banks when exchanging currencies. And daily interest charges from the central bank when holding open positions overnight in a certain currency. Which is other than where a trader’s account was opened or funded. 

Usually, swap rates are about 1% to 4% per day depending on the current market conditions. And average overnight financing rate set by central banks for major currencies.

How Do You Use The Word Swap In Forex?

Forex is also known as the foreign exchange market and it trades in all global currency pairs. Forex is an acronym for Foreign Exchange, which refers to the market where international currencies are traded.

The exchange rates of different currencies change constantly because of various reasons. Such as business or political developments inside a country. The strength of their economy compared with other economies, and so on.

Hence if you want to swap your currency for another one, then you can do so by exchanging them at forex markets.
Swapping a currency means exchanging it for another one with a similar value. So that you can buy or sell any asset in a country using foreign currency.

For example, if a business does not have enough dollars to pay an invoice. They can swap euros and receive dollars in return. The word “swap” is used when you trade your euro for dollars. Forex Swap is also known as “Cross-currency Swap”.