Trade Share CFDs for your favourite companies and 50+ U.S. stocks. Click here.
Refer a friend
Title Icon


Have a basic understanding of Forex, but not sure how to
level up? We have got you covered.

Scalping vs Swing Trading: What's the Difference?

Every forex trader has a different purpose, objective, time constraints, and investment capital. The right forex trading style for you depends on your main trading goals and requirements. If you believe you have great focus and you can easily make quick decisions even in stressful situations, scalping may be the right up your alley. But if you believe that you have substantial patience and precision, and you don't mind waiting a few days or weeks to profit off of your trade orders, swing trading might be the way forward for you. In this article, we take a look at the main differences between scalp trading vs swing trading.

What is scalping?

In scalping, you profit from the minuscule currency pair price changes by placing several hundreds and thousands of trade orders in a single trading day.

What is swing trading?

In swing trading, you place a trade order and hold it for a few days or weeks to profit from the short-to-medium term price gains in the forex market.

Scalping vs swing trading: Key differences

Time frame

The biggest difference between swing and scalp trading is the time frame, which is the amount of time in which the traders hold their trades. Scalpers use a short-term timeframe like a 5-minute or hourly chart to trade hundreds of orders in a single day. They only hold each trade for a few seconds to a few minutes before exiting all their positions, all on a single trading day. Swing traders, on the other hand, use a short to medium-term timeframe like a daily or weekly chart to trade a few trades over several days or weeks. They hold each trade for a few days or weeks and do not close their positions in a single trading day.


Risk refers to the chance of a trade failing due to the market moving against you. It can also be measured as the difference between expected returns and actual returns. Scalping in trading is much less risky since all trades are bought and sold in a span of a few minutes with limited price fluctuations. Unlike scalp trading, swing trading involves higher risk because swing traders hold trades overnight, exposing themselves to ‘overnight risks’ of potential high price fluctuations that can occur due to sudden economic, political or financial changes.

Trading costs

Trading costs refer to the costs that traders incur while trading in the forex market. These can include brokerage costs, taxes, exchange fees and more. Since scalping involves trading hundreds and thousands of orders in a single day, it also includes a high transaction cost. This happens because each trade consists of a brokerage cost that needs to be paid at the time of trade execution, and so, the higher the number of trades, the higher the brokerage cost incurred, making scalp trade an expensive process. On the other hand, swing traders incur fewer trading and transaction costs since they only trade a few orders over a span of several days and weeks, resulting in much lesser brokerage costs and taxes paid compared to scalpers.

Trading behaviour

Trading behaviour refers to the trader’s mindset and how they react to the trading environment. A scalper trader needs to make quick decisions in the market. But, a swing trader needs to be more patient to be able to wait for the markets to trend in their favour. Scalpers are required to trade under volatile market conditions and hence need to be able to function well under high-stress levels with discipline. On the other hand, swing traders need to rely more on technical analysis and therefore have lower stress levels.

Trade monitoring

Trade monitoring refers to how often the traders check the market and price fluctuations to exit or enter a new trade. Scalpers need to continuously monitor the market throughout the trading day to identify exit and entry points since they only hold trades for a few seconds or minutes. On the other hand, swing traders only need to monitor the markets every once in a while as they place fewer orders and hold their positions for an extended period of time. Swing traders look for price fluctuations in a market only a few times in a single trading day, unlike scalpers who check the markets for price fluctuations several times in a single hour.

Trade quantity

Trade quantity or volume of trade is the total units of currency pairs traded by a trader in a particular trading session. Since scalpers aim to profit off the minuscule price fluctuations, they trade huge quantities to earn small profits from individual trades executed quickly. The small profits add up to become significant profits due to the large quantum of trades. But, swing traders only engage in a few trades to make profits from price swings. Hence, the trade volume is lower for swing traders as they expect to make significant profits from medium to large price fluctuations over a period of a few days or weeks.

Scalping or swing trading: Which is your ideal style?

If you are a trader who wishes to take a minimum risk, scalping trading is a more suitable option for you. But, swing trading is best suited for traders who are patient enough to hold trades for a few weeks. Blueberry Markets is a forex trading platform in Australia that offers a seamless trading experience with tight spreads and lightning fast executions. Sign up for a live trading account or try a risk-free demo account.

Recommended Topics

  • How to Trade Bullish and Bearish Divergences

    Bullish and bearish divergences enable you to trade market reversals.

  • Top Support and Resistance Indicators

    Support and Resistance indicators identify price points on the forex chart where the markets can potentially reverse.

  • What is The Donchian Channel Indicator

    The Donchian Channel indicator can determine volatility and potential breakout signals in the market.

  • How to Install MT4: A Beginner's Guide

    MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is a powerful forex trading platform with a user-friendly interface and advanced analytical tools for automating trading.

  • What are Trendlines in Forex Trading?

    Trendlines in forex provide clear market signals for placing long or short orders.

  • Market Order vs Limit Order

    Market and Limit orders help execute automatic trading transactions, as per your trading preferences.

  • Bearish and Bullish Markets

    In the trading world, it is essential to be aware of the bull and bear market trends because they define the direction of the market

  • How to Read Trading Charts

    Trading forex live charts can help identify ongoing market trends, which can help you place successful traders.

  • Top Reversal Patterns For Forex Trading

    Reversal patterns provide traders with price levels at which the market can potentially reverse.

  • How to Find The Best Forex Trading Signals

    Forex trading signals are important market triggers that provide traders with ideal entry and exit price levels in the market.

  • Top Forex Trading Strategies That Actually Work

    Trading in forex, you will come across several forex trading strategies -- some more complex than the others. It is immensely crucial to start forex trading with the right strategy.

  • What are Volume Indicators

    Volume in the forex market can be used to determine the upcoming market trends. Volume indicators are forex trading indicators that can identify if the volume for a particular currency pair is high or low, providing traders with market continuation and reversal signals

  • Shooting Star Candlestick Pattern

    The Shooting Star Candlestick Pattern can identify bearish market reversals and provide traders with ideal price levels to short or exit the trade.

  • Top Trading Chart Patterns

    Predicting future currency pair prices help in confirming market continuation and reversal signals.

  • What is Slippage in Forex Trading?

    Slippages occur when a currency pair order is executed at a price different from the set market order price.

  • Buy limit vs Sell Stop Orders in Forex

    Placing buy limit and sell stop orders help employ a price control strategy on forex trades. Let's take a look at buy limit vs sell stop orders.

  • The Best Time Frame For Forex Trading

    A time frame is a designated time period where forex trading takes place. Time frames can be measured in minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years.

  • Top Technical Indicators in Forex

    Technical indicators are a market direction signal based on the current and historical price movement of a currency pair that provides traders with future price expectations

  • Top Continuation Patterns

    A continuation pattern indicates if the current market trend is going to continue in the same direction or not

  • How to Ace Divergence Trading in Forex

    The forex market is all about timing your trades well. Divergences give traders a market reversal signal right before a price trend changes

  • How To Trade Forex With Japanese Candlesticks?

    A Japanese Candlestick is a technical analysis tool used to analyze the currency pair’s price movement in the forex market.

  • Top Momentum Indicators To Analyse Trend Strength

    Momentum indicators are technical analysis tools that determine in which direction the market is headed and how strong or weak the ongoing trend is

  • Types of Moving Averages Every Trader Should Know

    Moving Average is a technical indicator which averages out currency pair prices in a specific time period in order to accurately identify market trend reversals and support-resistance levels.

  • 8 Popular Intraday Trading Indicators

    Intraday Trading Indicators help place successful short-term trade orders in the forex market.

  • What is the Tweezer Candlestick Formation?

    The Tweezer Candlestick formation is a reversal pattern that indicates either a market top (strong uptrend) or market bottom (strong downtrend)

  • Average Directional Index

    The ADX is a strength indicator that measures how strong or weak a particular market trend is.

  • How to Use Elliott Wave Theory For Forex Trading?

    The Elliott Wave Theory analyses a currency pair’s long-term price movement in the forex market.

  • What are Pivot Points in Forex

    Pivot Points help traders identify market reversals. With Pivot Points, traders can predict the support and resistance levels of a currency pair to make entry and exit decisions.

  • Keltner Channel

    Keltner Channel is a technical indicator that provides traders with strong continuation signals and trend directions by assessing a currency pair's price volatility.

  • Leading vs Lagging Indicators

    Leading and lagging indicators help traders measure the future and current performance of a currency pair, respectively. These indicators can help make successful trading decisions.

  • What is Relative Strength Index?

    Relative Strength Index (RSI) helps traders understand how frequently the currency pair prices change in the forex market to predict the future market prices.

  • Wide Ranging Bars

    Wide Ranging Bars are strong momentum indicators that help traders understand the market direction and identify ideal entry and exit points.

  • Harmonic Price Patterns in Forex

    Harmonic Price Patterns allow traders to predict future price movements and trend reversals to make ideal entry and exit decisions in the Forex market.

  • Double tops and bottoms

    Double Tops and Double Bottoms chart patterns help traders identify solid bullish and bearish trend reversals in the Forex market, and in turn, find the ideal market entry and exit points.

  • Falling and Rising Wedges

    When you are trading currency pairs in the Forex market, it is essential to know when the market can possibly reverse. The Falling and Rising Wedges pattern help identify market reversal signals and accurate market entry and exit points.

  • Forex Scalping Strategy

    Scalping refers to trading currency pairs in the Forex market based on real-time analysis. With Forex scalping, you hold a position for a very short period and close once you see a profit opportunity.

  • Symmetrical Triangle Pattern

    Symmetrical Triangle Patterns help identify market breakdowns (price fall) and breakouts (price rise), and in turn, help you plot the entry and exit prices for profitable Forex trading.

  • Introduction to Technical Analysis in Forex

    Technical analysis in Forex trading provides you with significant market trends, reversals and fluctuations and in turn helps you long and short term trades.

  • Trading breakouts and fakeouts

    Breakout and fakeout trading enable traders to take positions in rising and falling markets.

  • Fundamental Analysis in Forex Trading Explained

    Fundamental analysis in Forex trading is one of the several methods you can use to determine the relative security and intrinsic value of a nation’s currency.

  • 8 Top Commodity Trading Strategies

    Commodity trading is one of the best ways to diversify your portfolio and protect yourself from losses incurred due to inflation.

  • What is a Doji Candlestick?

    The Doji Candlestick is a pattern used in technical analyses of trend reversals in a market.

  • Moving Average: The Complete Guide

    Moving Average is used in Forex trading to compare the current currency pair pricing and where it stands with respect to the current average pair prices.

  • What is Volatility Index (VIX) and How Do You Trade It?

    One of the most popular trading markets in the world, the foreign exchange market allows investors to make quick money by trading currencies.

  • Forex Profit Calculator

    On average, a Forex trader can make anywhere between 5 to 15% of the initial amount they invested in the market.

  • Understanding markets gaps and slippage

    The foreign exchange rate reveals valuable details about particular currencies a trader wishes to trade-in.

  • What is a pip in forex?

    When trading in the Forex market, you need to have a close eye on two currencies at the same time. PIP helps you denote the change in a currency pair’s value.

  • Introduction to order types

    Order types in Forex trading determine and control how you enter and exit the market.

  • Using orders to manage risk

    Forex risk management includes a robust set of rules and regulations that protect you against Forex's negative impacts.

  • Managing risk in 7 steps

    Risk management in Forex is essential to individuals, groups of individuals, and organizations since it enables them to implement measures that help mitigate Forex risk and its negative impact.

  • Bullish and Bearish Flag Patterns

    Blueberry Markets discusses why it is essential to study the bullish and bearish flag patterns in Forex. Learn more.

Learn Icon


Master risk management and
become an expert forex trader.
Move on to the advanced course.

Guide to Forex
Trading indicators.

Enter your details to get a copy of our
free eBook

Thank you, please check your inbox for your ebook.

Ads BG

Start a risk free
demo account

News & Analysis

Catch up on what you might
have missed in the market.

Runner graphic

Ready to trade at
Blueberry Markets?

Your best trading experience
is a click away