AuthorAuthor: Jeffrey CammackUpdated: Sep 16, 2022

Last Updated On Sep 16, 2022

Jeffrey Cammack

The Forex Market Hours

Forex trading can be done almost 24 hours a day, 5 days a week. We say “almost” because every day at rollover time (5 pm New York time), you are unable to place trades for a few minutes.

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 can make it impractical and risky to trade close to rollover time, 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 and 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 midnight (05:00) in the Philippines. When it is summertime in the northern hemisphere and the U.S. session closes at 17:00 EDT, it is 04:00 in the Philippines. Therefore in the Philippines, the Forex market opens and closes at either 05:00 (**roughly between March and November) or 04:00 (**roughly between October and March), depending on the time of the year.

Although we can say that the Forex market is open from Sunday 17:00 EST/EDT to Friday 17:00 EST/EDT, we can also say that it 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.

*EST = Eastern Standard Time

*EDT = Eastern Daylight Time

**In New York, the transition from EST (winter) to EDT (summer) happens at 02:00 on the second Sunday in March and the transition from EDT (summer) to EST (winter) happens at 02:00 on the first Sunday in November. To establish the specific dates of the transitions, you can use a calendar or consult your Forex broker.

As you can see in this table, the best time to trade Forex is generally between 15:00 and 21:00 PHST (Philippine Standard Time). 15:00 PHST is when the London session opens and 21:00 is one hour into the U.S. session. Between 15:00 and 21:00 is a good time to catch important economic news releases which can have a great impact on 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.

When the London session opens, there is often big market participation and good volatility. Likewise, the open of the U.S. session 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, which means that large positions can be absorbed by the market easier, with a smaller chance of experiencing slippage or significant market impact.

The table above is calculated from EST (wintertime in New York), which is 11 hours and 00 minutes behind Philippine Standard Time. In this example, the London trading session starts at 15:00 IST while the U.S. session opens at 20:00. After the transition from EST to EDT in March, the London session opens at 14:00 Philippine Standard Time and the U.S. session at 19:00. 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.

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

Here is a table with market times (in GMT) for major cities around the world:

Region City Open (GMT) Close (GMT)
Europe London 8:00 am 5:00 pm
Frankfurt 7:00 am 4:00 pm
America New York 1:00 pm 10:00 pm
Chicago 2:00 pm 11:00 pm
Asia Tokyo midnight 9:00 am
Hong Kong 1:00 am 10:00 am
Pacific Sydney 10:00 pm 7:00 am
Wellington 10:00 pm 6:00 am


Although the Forex market can be traded basically 24/5, the best market liquidity, volatility, and trading conditions are generally experienced during the London session and early U.S. session. 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 affect the currency markets in a meaningful way.

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.

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