When it comes to trading forex, timing can make a significant difference in your success. Understanding the forex trading sessions is crucial for identifying the best time to trade forex. In this post, I will discuss the different forex trading sessions and the best forex pairs to trade in each session, based on market volume and session overlaps.

Forex trading is unique because of its hours of operation. The forex market is open 24 hours a day, five days a week. However, not all hours of the day are equal in terms of trading volume and volatility. The forex market is most active when the trading hours of different sessions overlap. Understanding these sessions is essential to identify the best time to trade forex.

Forex Trading Sessions

There are four major forex trading sessions around the world. Each session is defined by the location of the financial centers that are active during that time.To better understand the importance of trading sessions you just need to have an understanding of the difference in time zone. The London sessions exist because market participants in Europe are awake and active during the session. Session times are usually dictated by the business operation hours of a country, economy or zone. 

It is also important to note that session starting and end time usually change especially the London and NY sessions during winter and summer due to daylight saving adjustments therefore it is important to consider the current season while trading as sessions’ time will gain (Winter) or lose (Summer) by 1 hour. This gain and loss of an hour is known as day light saving.

1. Sydney Session

forex trading sessions - Sydney

This is the first session to open every new trading week on Sunday at 10:00 PM GMT and closes at 7:00 AM GMT. It is the smallest session in terms of trading volume and liquidity compared to the other three sessions. However, the Sydney Session can still offer trading opportunities, especially for traders looking to trade the Australian Dollar (AUD), New Zealand Dollar (NZD), and the Japanese Yen (JPY).

2. Tokyo Session

Opens at 11:00 PM GMT and closes at 8:00 AM GMT. The Tokyo Session is known for its high volatility due to the significant amount of trading activity that takes place during this session. This session accounts for around 20% of the total Forex trading volume. During this session, traders can look to trade the Japanese Yen (JPY) and other Asian currencies.

forex trading sessions - Tokyo

3. London Session

forex trading sessions - London

Considered the most active session and the most significant in terms of trading volume, the London session accounts for approximately 35% of the total Forex trading volume. The London Session opens at 7:00 AM GMT and closes at 4:00 PM GMT. During this session, traders can expect high liquidity and volatility, making it the most popular session for traders to enter and exit trades.

4. New York Session

The New York session begins at 1:00 PM GMT and ends at 9:00 PM GMT. It overlaps with the London session for four hours, and it is considered a highly volatile session. The best forex pairs to trade during this session are USD and CAD pairs. These pairs offer high liquidity, tight spreads, and a high probability of trending.

forex trading sessions - Newyork

Best Forex Pairs to Trade in Each Session

It’s essential to understand the best forex pairs to trade during each session, based on market volume and session overlaps. Here is a breakdown of the best forex pairs to trade in each session:

  • Sydney Session: AUD/USD and NZD/USD
  • Tokyo Session: USD/JPY, EUR/JPY, and AUD/JPY
  • London Session: EUR/USD, GBP/USD, GBP/JPY, and EUR/GBP
  • New York Session: USD/JPY, EUR/USD, CAD/JPY, and USD/CAD

Best Time to Trade Forex

The best time to trade forex depends on several factors including your strategy, the currency pairs you trade and the session overlaps. Session overlaps are the periods when multiple sessions are active at the same time. During these overlaps, there are more traders buying and selling currencies, resulting in higher trading volumes and tighter spreads. This makes it easier to execute trades at desirable levels and potentially increase profits.

The four major trading sessions in forex are Sydney, Tokyo, London, and New York. The best time to trade forex is during the overlaps of these sessions. The following are the best session overlaps to trade forex:

1. London-New York Overlap (1:00 PM to 4:00 PM GMT)

The heaviest overlap within the forex markets occurs in the U.S./London session overlap. More than 50% of all trades happen when these markets overlap because the USD and the EUR are the two most popular currencies to trade, it’s no surprise that EURUSD is the most traded pair globally. This is the most optimal time for you to trade since volatility (or price activity) is high.

2. Tokyo-London Overlap (7:00 AM to 9:00 AM GMT)

While the Tokyo-London overlap may not be as volatile as the U.S./London overlap, it still presents traders with the opportunity to make profitable trades. Traders looking to capitalize on this period should consider focusing on the EUR, GBP, JPY and CHF pairs. It is important to note that during this session, most traders based in North America (USA & Canada) are not active in the market due to differences in time zones.

The best time to trade forex is during the session overlaps, particularly the Tokyo-London and London-New York overlaps. It’s important to remember that trading during these overlaps requires careful analysis and risk management, as the high volatility can result in significant losses if not managed properly.

Advantages of Trading in the Right Forex Trading Sessions

  • Increased Liquidity
  • More Volatility
  • Better Trading Opportunities
  • Avoiding Low-Liquidity Periods
  • Efficient Use of Time


In conclusion, the Forex market operates 24 hours a day, but the best time to trade is during the overlapping periods of the major trading sessions. The London/New York Session overlap is considered the best time to trade, as it accounts for more than 50% of the total Forex trading volume. Trading during active market hours provides traders with several advantages, including increased liquidity, tighter spreads, and volatility. By understanding the different

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Forex trading sessions are the periods during which the Forex market is open and active for trading. There are four main trading sessions: the Sydney session, the Tokyo session, the London session, and the New York session.

The best time to trade Forex depends on the trader’s individual strategy and the currency pairs they are trading. However, in general, the highest trading volume and liquidity typically occur during the London and New York sessions, so these are often considered the best times to trade.

Yes, Forex trading is technically possible 24 hours a day, but trading volume and liquidity may be lower during off-hours, which can make it more difficult to execute trades or find buyers and sellers.

Trading during the Tokyo session can be advantageous for traders based in the Asia-Pacific region or those who prefer to trade Asian currencies, as this session overlaps with the Sydney session and can provide high trading volume for AUD, NZD, and JPY currency pairs.

Yes, the New York session is the second most volatile trading session. It is important to note that it overlaps with the end of the London session (Most volatile session) and can see significant price movements due to economic news releases and trading activity. Traders should be aware of the potential risks and adjust their strategies accordingly.