Interestingly, most forex traders come from the United Kingdom even though Asia has the largest market. How so? Find out the reasons below.

With more than 6.6 billion US Dollars traded each day along with global yearly revenue of 2.409 quadrillion US Dollars, it is clear that the evolution of forex trading has turned it from being a niche interest involving a limited group of traders into a global retail investment phenomenon.

With markets that are virtually operating constantly along with the availability of state-of-the-art trading tools, forex trading is practically a hegemon all by itself as it is now positioned at the intersection between technology, finance, and globalization in a manner that not many asset classes can lay claim to.

Country with most forex traders

Even then, some countries seem to host a higher number of active traders while others display high levels of interest but overall still have lower trading volumes. The globalization of the industry has made it possible for online trading to spread all around the world with platforms expanding away from the major financial centers like New York and London to other areas of the world. As such, brokers have taken advantage of the ever-growing technology by obtaining operating licenses from regulatory bodies around the world to promote their services in regions outside the countries they originate from.

Since the basic requirement to gain access to the forex market is to have an internet connection, this has only increased the number of people that are becoming forex traders. This is even made easier by the fact that most of the forex brokerage platforms can be operated on a mobile phone which is a device almost everyone in the world has today.

Going by regions of the world, here is the order of continents sorted by the highest number of traders:

  1. Asia: 3.2M
  2. Europe and North America: 1.5M each
  3. Africa: 1.3M
  4. The Middle East: 970,000
  5. South America: 600,000
  6. Central America: 335,000
  7. Oceania: 190,000.


In Terms of Countries, UK is the Winner

Despite Europe having the second largest number of active traders, the United Kingdom hosts the highest number of forex traders in the world with almost 300,000; about one-fifth of Europe's forex traders. Forex trading is very popular in the United Kingdom more than in other parts of Europe despite some regulatory changes that were recently introduced.

These changes had to do with leveraged products like Forex and CFDs, which actually have led to a decrease in the number of people registering for trading accounts across European countries. For instance, in Belgium, leverage is banned completely from any form of trading while the promotion of leveraged products is not allowed in the Netherlands and France.

One of the major regulatory bodies in Europe, the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), introduced regulations whereby higher leverage can only be accessed by traders that make a specific request for it and they must show that they are capable of handling it.

In the UK, the Financial Conduct Authority (the regulatory body for financial activities including forex trading) has only consulted on enforcing strict controls on leverage but is yet to enact any changes. Therefore, traders are still taking advantage of this as they can trade on margin which enables them to use relatively small deposits to magnify their market exposure to currency movements.

Another thing is that the United Kingdom remains one of the central hubs for forex trading. As such, the United Kingdom still has the highest average daily turnover for forex trading at 1.6 trillion US Dollars which only goes to demonstrate the increased level of active forex traders in the UK.

Another factor that allows the UK to host the most forex traders is that there are very few brokers that will reject prospective traders from the UK compared to citizens of some countries. Thus, forex traders from the UK have a wide range of brokers to choose from and find the one that suits them perfectly along with the strategy they are trying to implement.

Despite the UK currently hosting the most forex traders, it does not change the fact that forex trading continues to grow and provides financial opportunities for people irrespective of background or location. One area with the most growing number of traders is Africa, particularly in South Africa and Nigeria. The reasons can be explored in the articles below: