New York Open Breakout Strategy

As with most breakout strategies for Forex, the key principle behind the New York Open breakout strategy is to capture any strong early moves occurring at the start of the trading session.

The opening of a financial market offers a great opportunity to profit. Volume will typically increase, so creating momentum. This can provide strong moves which can easily be used to bank some pips.

Trading at this time aims to capture volatility at the opening of the market. In this instance it looks to capitalise on the swell in volume as US traders enter the market at the start of the trading day.

The opening of the US financial markets brings with it the volatility. This increase the potential for breakouts in price which can be used to capture profits. In fact any market open session can provide fertile hunting ground for those looking to put together a simple Forex system to capture breakouts.

When Is the New York Open?

The New York open refers to the opening times of the key US financial markets. These are principally the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and NASDAQ.

Opening times are 09:30 Eastern Time (EST) through to the daily close at 16:00.

These opening hours cover the times when dealing takes place on a number of different financial indices. The most notable of these are the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and the NASDAQ.

Around the time of New York Open markets generally see a peak in daily trading volumes. In terms of overall volume, the  US session is the second busiest Forex session (London is first). However the time overlap with the London market at opening makes for the high point of deals during the day.

Implementing a Strategy

There are various permutations of the New York Open breakout strategy. As this is an ‘intra-day’ strategy the focus tends to be on low chart time-frames. Using 5, 15 or 30 minutes charts is liable to yield the best results.

The next step is to define an entry. There are a number of ways in which you can do this.

A typical approach is to make use of the preceding price action. This can be used to define a trading range from which a breakout in price can be traded.

One example would be to use the highs and lows achieved over the course of the preceding London trading session. This would make for a typical box breakout Forex strategy.  The high and low point reached over the session define the upper and lower levels for entering on a price breakout. Simple but very effective.

An alternative would be to identify the previous days highs and lows. If these have not been breached by the time the US markets open, they would make ideal entry points.

As with any trading system you need to make sure that you define your strategy thoroughly before trading it. Despite what some nameless strategies on the web may advise, simply placing a stop 20 pips out and entering on a high candle break is not a strategy in itself.

Keep a keen awareness of key levels on the chart. Typically previous levels of support and resistance, candle highs and lows are good indicators to focus on. When combined with momentum indicators they can give good places to locate your stops.

Currency Pairs to Trade

Typically for a volume trading strategy you would be advised to trade the currency that is most associated with the opening range you are trading. In this instance this would be the US dollar (USD). The advice for this strategy is no different.

However the beauty of trading at the opening of the New York session is that most key pairs are crossed with the USD! Therefore good candidates to trade include EUR/USD, GBP/USD, USD/JPY, USD/CAD and USD/CHF.


new york open breakout strategy example

Just as you need to define your entry, you also need to define your exit. Rewarding yourself with profit on a trade is important for consistent trading success. Take a look at this in conjunction with your stop loss. This will give a sanity check of the risk versus reward on the trade.


A key benefit of trading breakouts is that you can plan your trading in advance. With a little research they make it easy to define entry, exit and potential profit prior to the actual breakout. All you have to do when the market opens is ‘pull the trigger’ if the conditions identified are met.

Planning your trades in this manner makes this a strategy particularly suitable for new traders. It is easy to get to grips with and adds a mechanical element to the trading process.  This can help to overcome many of the pitfalls that new traders encounter. Particular issues include emotional inhibitors which can arise from trading without a clear plan and entry or exit strategy.

Trading the New York Open requires you to ask questions of your strategy and also yourself. In fact the two are inexplicably linked. So in devising your strategy to trade the New York Open make sure you have both asked of yourself and answered any questions that the market may throw at you.

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