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Forex Bank Trading Strategy Revealed – Learn to Track the Smart Money!

October 17
04:08 2018

Forex Bank Trading Strategy Explained (Updated 2020)

Questions we will answer:

  • Who is Smart Money?

  • What is the Forex Bank Trading Strategy?

  • Why is tracking Smart Money critical to successful traders?

  • Step 1: Accumulation

  • Step 2: Manipulation

  • Step 3: Market Trend/Distribution

Daily Forex Bank Volume

Who Is Smart Money?

Throughout this article, you will read the term ‘smart money.’

I use this term to define the largest market participants; those who move massive volume so large that their position cannot be opened and closed in a single order without spiking the market.

This includes the largest banks, prop firms, massive global companies, insurance companies, Hedge Funds, as well as speculative traders in every variety from around the globe.

It is important to understand that although the banks might control the majority of the daily volume (refer to the chart above), the VAST majority of that volume is those banks acting as a market maker for the other types of traders mentioned above.

Yes, the top 10 banks illustrated in the chart above do take speculative positions, but the vast majority of the volume is simply market making activity, not speculation.

This is critical information, as it tells us 1 very important clue. If banks are primarily market makers then they will by default drive the market to and from areas of supply and demand which is the foundation in how we track them.

What is the forex bank trading strategy?

Definition: The Forex Bank Trading Strategy is designed to identify where the largest market participants are likely to enter or exit their position based on areas of supply and demand.

We term these levels as ‘manipulation points’.

As you can see in the illustration above, the top 10 banks control well over 60% of the daily forex market volume. Because of this, when they move in and out of the market, the market moves!

The chart above is of the EUR/USD, and it illustrates the bank trading strategy in action, live.

The trade shown was taken on November 29th, 2019 with the manipulation point (step 2 described below) having been selected 72 hours in advance in the daily market preview video (as part of the lifetime membership we do a daily market preview video each night, which shows the exact levels I’m looking to trade the following day) as you can see in the picture below.

This article will walk you through the basic outline of the 3 step process behind the forex bank trading strategy.

Euro Long - DMP Pic

3 Steps to Success

In any market, there must be a counterpart to every transaction. If you are looking to buy the market someone must be willing to sell to you. Conversely, if you are looking to sell then someone needs to be willing to buy your current position from you.

As an example, if Bank XYZ desires to buy a large position in the EUR/USD, using the principal discussed above they must find an equal amount of selling pressure.

As their positions are so large, they are always entered over time so as to not reveal their hand. This leads us to the first step in the process, accumulation of a position.

Step #1 - Accumulation

Accumulation

Accumulation: Unlike you and I, because of the massive volume banks control they must enter positions over time that often show visibly as range-bound or sideways price action.

We call this accumulation as they are areas where smart money frequently enters or ‘accumulates’ their desired position over multiple hours or longer.

As their primary function is making the market, they make money by accumulating a long position that is later sold off at a higher price or accumulating a short position they will later cover or buy back at a lower price.

What comes after this period of accumulation?

Step #2 - Manipulation

Manipulation

Manipulation: Over the last decade of educating traders I’ve heard many forex traders say that it feels as if they are entering the market at exactly the wrong time.

Many traders feel as if the market is just waiting for them to enter before it instantly turns the opposite direction. Not only is that true, but this crucial step we term as ‘market manipulation’ is critical to tracking banking activity in the forex market.  

The first point I want to mention is that we use the term ‘market manipulation’ but you could just as accurately describe it as a searching for liquidity, a trapping move, stop hunt, etc.

Regardless of the cause, the manipulation or ‘false push’ that comes at the end of the accumulation phase, is the most important factor in tracking smart money.

Bearish: A stop run or false push beyond the high of an accumulation period likely means that smart money has been SELLING into the market, and a short-term trend in that direction is likely to start.

Bullish: A stop run or false push beyond the low of an accumulation period likely means that smart money has been BUYING into the market, and a short-term trend in that direction is likely to start.

This point, both bullish and bearish is illustrated in the second picture above. As you can see the manipulation comes after the accumulation, and it often occurs right before step #3 begins, the market trend.

Step #3 - Market Trend

Market Trend

Distribution/Market Trend: The final step after the manipulation is where the money is made, and the market begins to trend!

The goal is to not only avoid the trap of chasing the false break, as most retail traders do but to profit from it!

You can do this by ONLY trading AFTER a manipulation move or false push is clearly visible, and you have a valid stop run and confirmation to confirm the trade entry.

By correctly identifying which direction they have manipulated the market we can then understand which direction they intend to push the price, giving us a massive advantage.

Hands down this is the easiest area for us to profit from but only if we can properly identify the first 2 steps in the process.

Putting Forex in Perspective

No doubt this trading strategy is very different from anything you have been using. Realizing that there is short-term manipulation of prices in the forex market, and learning to read the intention behind the moves will take practice. 

Anything in life that is new takes time to learn and this will be no exception. I was trading for 3.5 years before I was producing any type of consistent profit, and many have been at it even longer without reaching profitability.

The point I’m getting at is that this is NOT a quick path to riches. 

How do you expedite the process? First, analyze the strategy you’re trading? Ask yourself this, if it doesn’t take into consideration the institutions that actually move this market, how can it produce consistent results? 

The fact is, 99% of retail trading strategies are reactive in nature. In other words, when the market goes up, your strategy will begin to produce buy signals and when the market begins to fall it will produce sell signals. 

This, however, makes you vulnerable to smart money as they are doing the exact opposite in that they buy into falling markets and selling in rallies.

It’s the smart monies market and turning a consistent profit requires understanding how they move it.

For those looking to learn to trade the official forex bank trading strategy of DTFL then I would recommend the actual Bank Trading Course that you can access by Clicking Here.

Happy Trading,

Sterling

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41 Comments

  1. Cornel Rusu
    Cornel Rusu March 05, 05:30

    Dear , Sti and Ch

    That is the most inteligent aproch to FX market –
    To learn the rules of the game , you have to climb on the tower platform
    and not through keyhole into door .

    Best Regards
    Co

    Reply to this comment
  2. Lila
    Lila March 25, 09:07

    THANKS. Verifies what I’ve known for a very long time. As I always say, trading is not rocket science. All sure wins are obvious patterns on the chart. There is a ranging period travelling in a well-defined channel, a retracement to an indicator (your broken line looks like the 21 SMA to me) and a sudden push forward as it breaks through a pivot line. You know it goes a long way when the resistance is broken. If you’re not sure where it’s going to end, employ a S/L to protect a small part of your profit. You can do this when you position yourself well. The worst that can happen is that the fluctuations will hit your S/L but you still exit at a profit. There are other patterns you can employ, but if you exploit this one thing over and over again, it’s not impossible to double your equity over and over, week after week! Ranging to breakout happens in the market ALL THE TIME.

    Reply to this comment
    • stersuhr
      stersuhr March 28, 23:11

      Hey Lila,

      Glad to hear you do well with this. Yes “ranging to breakout” does happen all the time…I would re word that as “accumulating to breakout” as someone is accumulating a position through these periods. The key is understand what is being accumulated…and thus which direction you should be looking for the manipulation.

      -Sterling

      Reply to this comment
    • Kyle
      Kyle August 10, 02:04

      I’ll let u think that EMAs work cough smart money doesn’t use indicators cough

      Reply to this comment
      • Sterling Suhr
        Sterling Suhr Author August 10, 11:56

        I’d recommend going through some more info as the EMA’s have little to do with how we trade and trading without them is no problem at all.

        What we do need is a basic 15M chart, nothing else. Anything you see on my chart is just a personal preference other than the candlesticks themselves.

        Second, I have a 5-year live track record of calling manipulation points in advance. Unlike most educators, what we do actually works and I prove it each day.

        All the best in your trading.

        -Sterling

        Reply to this comment
  3. Xyryx
    Xyryx November 01, 16:51

    very very useful information…i have started trading not so long ago… been trading using nothing but instinct so far…managed to get some good profit…these couple of days i have been reading the information here and i must say it really makes sense compared to all the other complicated things out there… i am still yet to fully understand this process.. i can recognize these trends, but unfortunately a bit too late…would love it if you can give some insight on how to recognize these effectively… 🙂

    -A happy newbie trader who likes what he is seeing on this website –

    Reply to this comment
  4. Olivia
    Olivia February 21, 19:16

    Hello there! I know this is kind of off topic but
    I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site?
    I’m getting fed up of WordPress because I’ve had issues with hackers and I’m looking at alternatives for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.

    Reply to this comment
    • Chad
      Chad February 27, 01:54

      Hi Olivia

      I sent you an email on how to improve your security with wordpress. Our site is a WP platform and since we have improved our security we haven had much problems with hackers. Good luck

      Chad

      Reply to this comment
      • PATO
        PATO May 18, 09:44

        I’m ready to run with the big dogs now .. while the bulls and bears are fighting,I’ll sneak from behind and bite theirs butts.

        Reply to this comment
  5. Bobby
    Bobby April 15, 15:30

    This makes a lot of sense. You may have mentioned it somewhere, but what time frames were being used for the charts provided? Are there specific ones that the phases should be looked for using? Thanks

    Reply to this comment
    • Chad
      Chad April 19, 08:47

      Hi Bobby

      We use the 15 minute time frame for entries but also look at the hourly charts to build a bias for the day. If its clear we look mainly for signs in that direction otherwise we look for the clear manipulation at the high probability levels we als get from the hourly charts.

      Take care

      Chad

      Reply to this comment
  6. timmy
    timmy March 02, 15:13

    what moving averages do you apply on charts? and what do they do with regards to your trade confirmations?

    Reply to this comment
    • Allen Henn
      Allen Henn March 04, 19:26

      It is the 200 EMA (Exponential Moving Average) on the M15 time frame. There is also the 800 EMA showing us where the H1 200ema is on the 15 minute chart.

      Reply to this comment
      • sreeram
        sreeram October 17, 11:03

        ok, where to book profits, is there any concept of booking profits ? and similarly when 200 ema breaks above then what we have to do ? sell on every candle high breaks ?

        Reply to this comment
        • Sterling Suhr
          Sterling Suhr Author December 07, 14:29

          Just watching the course would do you no good. This is why traders fail. Its like learning to fly an airplane by reading a course or learning to do brain surgery by reading a course and watching some videos. When I learned to fly an airplane I had an instructor that spent the first 20 hours of flight time with me before I was able to solo. This is the same in forex. The course is important just as it is in learning to fly, but the most important part was having the instructor sitting in the right seat actually SHOWING me how to do everything. This is the same when learning to trade…you need someone in the “right hand seat” actually teaching you how to do what was taught in the course.

          -Sterling

          Reply to this comment
  7. Gerarfx
    Gerarfx August 27, 21:19

    really good article !! very interesting…
    how much trades do you usually find per day /week ??

    thank you !!

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author December 07, 14:47

      The amount of trades we have each week varies. If you go look under the Recent Trades tab on the site you will find the last 6 months of trading results. Each post has a video for every month. Remember this is on just the EUR/USD and GBP/USD…the strategy can however be traded on all other pairs and in fact other markets as well. Therefore the amount of trades you can get each month can vary wildly based on the amount of pairs you trade.

      -Sterling

      Reply to this comment
  8. Nazeer
    Nazeer November 06, 14:01

    Any particular time to track the movement?

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author November 06, 16:00

      We only trade from 2-6:30 AM Eastern and 8-12:30 AM Eastern. Since we are looking to track banking activity we want to trade during the most active times when the highest liquidity is being traded.

      -Sterling

      Reply to this comment
    • Jarz
      Jarz May 24, 11:58

      When you say retrace do you mean the retest back to the resistance cause i was wondering how that first bar that went past the support wasnt a maniupulation as well. And what do you mean by the cycle is valid, are you saying that it confirms it is not manipulated or that it is?

      Reply to this comment
  9. Blott
    Blott December 10, 16:03

    Look for the first close outside the Asia range on the M15 time frame. Put on 2 lots/minis/micros and take one off at 20 pips, letting the rest run. If the first move was a fake, you nearly always get 20 pips in the fake direction, before price reverses into the intended direction. Same method with 2 lots.

    If the initial move was the right one (which sometimes happens), then you get 20 pips + the rest:-).

    Happy hunting!

    Reply to this comment
  10. Sipo
    Sipo January 05, 11:59

    Is your strategy suitable for intraday trading

    Reply to this comment
  11. ChrisKalt
    ChrisKalt January 06, 10:42

    The 3rd chart in this article, the one with the 120 pip downward market trend, shows two boxes labeled “accumulation”. Between those two boxes is a price dip and then the price returns to the accumulation range. The second time it leaves the range it is a price spike and this article labels that as the “manipulation” signal to take a short position. My question is how is the first dip not to be miss-interpreted to be a manipulation that would represent a buy signal? Is there something obvious in the chart I’m missing that I should use to rule that out?

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author April 06, 00:59

      If the retrace is less than a 70% retracement of the previous push then the cycle is still considered valid.

      -Sterling

      Reply to this comment
  12. Foremost
    Foremost April 29, 16:41

    Thanks a lot sir for your magnanimity in this handout. You are one of the few most sincere and great Forex teacher I have came across on the internet in the recent times. The information you provided here is equal to none and we appreciate you for that and remain eternally grateful to you!
    Foremost

    Reply to this comment
  13. Aiman
    Aiman August 03, 01:57

    Greetings sir , Is this still applicable ?

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author September 15, 10:53

      Applicable to what, forex? If so then yes, that is the market we trade. If you have any other questions, feel free to send them via the ‘Contact Us’ page in the main menu.

      Sterling

      Reply to this comment
  14. Olayink
    Olayink March 27, 06:22

    Hello sterling, I need a guide to tutor me in force, am new here

    Reply to this comment
  15. Don
    Don April 30, 02:36

    Speak for yourself 1st you didnt know that was going to happen 🙂

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author May 01, 07:54

      Haha…Well, technically you are right. There is no such thing as a ‘sure thing’ in trading or knowing ‘for sure’ something is going to happen. Then again, no one is right or knows what the market is going to do at all times which is why we don’t look for perfection, just a statistical edge. All the best!

      Reply to this comment
  16. Clark
    Clark December 04, 22:51

    I believe that I will do that strategy someday and I will master those techniques that I’ve read. Thank you so much in advance, its very helpful and this article has a lot of information. Keep it up.

    Reply to this comment
  17. giulio
    giulio February 13, 12:01

    that’s a very interesting approach, would there be any specific hours for this strategy to work best? I’m guessing European and American banking hours would be the most likely to contain such alterations

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author April 15, 18:57

      Yes Giulio, you’re correct. Being that we’re trying to track smart money we want to be trading when they are as well. I recommend the first 4.5 hours of the European session as well as the first 4.5 hours of the NY Session (2:00 AM to 6:30 AM Eastern & 8:00 AM to 12:30 PM Eastern).

      Reply to this comment
  18. minecraft
    minecraft April 23, 22:45

    Nice respond in return of this difficulty with firm arguments and explaining the whole
    thing on the topic of that.

    Reply to this comment
  19. steve
    steve May 20, 14:34

    is the strategy tradeable on the daily timeframe?

    Reply to this comment
    • Sterling Suhr
      Sterling Suhr Author May 22, 14:45

      When it comes to trading from the Daily timeframe, yes, that is something that can be done.

      With that being said, I teach trading from the shorter time frame charts. The daily video I do and all the training will be specific to that.

      We do have many members who apply the strategy to other time frames, though. While specific rules might need to be adjusted to the larger time frames, the general principle applies well to whatever time frame someone is trading.

      -Sterling

      Reply to this comment
  20. PatrickFX
    PatrickFX May 22, 14:26

    Very educational, nice one for keeping us updated pertaining to your investing success.

    Reply to this comment

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