Trading Philosophy 101
Types of Currency Pairs

Types of Currency Pairs

Types of Currency Pairs: Understanding the Differences

When it comes to trading in the foreign exchange market, one of the most important concepts to understand is the different types of currency pairs that are available. In this article, we will take a closer look at the main types of currency pairs and how they differ from one another.

Major Currency Pairs

The major currency pairs are the most widely traded currency pairs in the world and include the following:

EUR/USD (euro/US dollar)

USD/JPY (US dollar/Japanese yen)

GBP/USD (British pound/US dollar)

USD/CHF (US dollar/Swiss franc)

USD/CAD (US dollar/Canadian dollar)

AUD/USD (Australian Dollar/US Dollar)

NZD/USD (New Zealand Dollar/US Dollar)

These currency pairs are considered major because they involve the US dollar and one of the world’s most widely traded currencies, such as the euro or the yen. They are also considered the most liquid pairs, which means that they tend to have the tightest spreads and the most consistent trading volume.

Minor Currency Pairs

The minor currency pairs, also known as cross currency pairs, are pairs that do not include the US dollar. Some examples include:

EUR/GBP (euro/British pound)

EUR/CHF (euro/Swiss franc)

GBP/JPY (British pound/Japanese yen)

These pairs tend to be less liquid and more volatile than major pairs, and as such, they may be more suitable for more experienced traders.

Exotic Currency Pairs

Exotic currency pairs involve the currencies of emerging economies and are considered to be less liquid and more volatile than major and minor pairs. Some examples include:

USD/TRY (US dollar/Turkish lira)

EUR/BRL (euro/Brazilian real)

USD/ZAR (US dollar/South African rand)

These currency pairs offer higher potential returns but also come with a higher level of risk. As such, they are generally considered to be more suitable for more advanced traders.


In conclusion, understanding the different types of currency pairs and their characteristics is crucial for any trader looking to navigate the foreign exchange market. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, it’s important to have a clear understanding of the different pairs and how they are likely to behave in order to make informed trading decisions.