When Did Forex Trading Start? A Comprehensive Guide

Forex trading is one of the most popular and lucrative financial markets in the world. According to the latest statistics, the daily trading volume in the forex market is over $6 trillion, making it the largest financial market in the world. However, have you ever wondered when did forex trading start? How did this market come into existence, and what were the historic events that have shaped it over time?

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the history of forex trading and answer all your questions related to the origins of currency trading. From the first currency exchange markets to the latest trading technologies, we will uncover it all.

The Origins of Forex Trading

The concept of trading currencies for profit dates back to the ancient times of human civilization. Traders and merchants used to exchange different forms of currency and goods to facilitate trade and commerce. However, the first official currency exchange market was established in Amsterdam, Netherlands, in the 17th century.

The Amsterdam Stock Exchange, which was founded in 1602, is considered to be the first-ever formal stock exchange in the world. Initially, the exchange traded in commodities and goods, such as spices and tobacco. However, in the early 18th century, the nascent currency exchange market started to gain popularity among the merchants and traders. The Amsterdam Exchange introduced the first currency exchange rates, which were based on the demand and supply of different currencies.

The Evolution of Forex Trading

The currency exchange market continued to grow throughout the 19th century, as the European economies started to expand and trade with each other. However, the rise of the gold standard in the late 19th century brought a significant change in the way currencies were traded. The gold standard was a monetary system, where the value of the currency was tied to the value of gold. The central banks of the countries would hold gold reserves and issue paper money in exchange for gold.

The gold standard brought stability and transparency to the currency exchange market, as it ensured that all the currencies had a fixed value. However, the system was also inflexible and could not be adjusted according to the changing market conditions.

The World War II brought a significant change in the international monetary system and marked the end of the gold standard system. The Bretton Woods Agreement, which was signed in 1944, established a new international monetary system, where the US dollar would be the primary reserve currency and all the other currencies would be pegged to the US dollar. The exchange rates were also fixed and could not fluctuate more than 1%.

However, the Bretton Woods Agreement started to lose its effectiveness in the 1960s, as the US economy started to weaken and the trading partners started to demand gold in exchange for US dollars. In 1971, the US president Richard Nixon announced the decision to suspend the convertibility of the US dollars into gold, which marked the end of the Bretton Woods Agreement.

The Rise of Forex Trading

The end of the Bretton Woods Agreement brought volatility and uncertainty to the currency market, as the exchange rates were free to fluctuate based on the demand and supply factors. The rise of the computers and the internet in the 1980s and 1990s brought a significant change in the way forex trading was conducted.

The electronic trading platforms and the internet allowed the retail traders to access the forex market and trade currencies from the comfort of their homes. The introduction of the online trading platforms, such as MetaTrader, changed the way forex trading was done, as it allowed the traders to execute trades in real-time and access the market data and analysis tools.

Today, the forex market is one of the most dynamic and innovative markets in the world, with new trading technologies and strategies being introduced every day. The forex trading is also accessible to everyone, regardless of their location or experience level, as the online trading platforms and the educational resources have made it easier than ever before to learn and trade currencies.


Forex trading is not just a financial market, but it is a reflection of the human civilization's evolution and progress over time. The currency exchange market has come a long way since the first currency exchange market was established in Amsterdam in the 17th century. Today, forex trading is accessible to everyone, and it remains one of the most popular and lucrative markets in the world.

In conclusion, if you are interested in forex trading, it is essential to understand the historic events that have shaped the market over time. We hope that this comprehensive guide has answered all your questions related to 'when did forex trading start' and provided you with a better understanding of the origins and evolution of forex trading. Happy trading!