Slippage in Trading: What It Is and How to Avoid It | TIOmarkets

BY TIO Staff

|June 6, 2024

Slippage in trading is a concept that every trader encounters, yet not all fully understand its implications or how to mitigate its effects. This article aims to demystify slippage, exploring its causes, its impact on trading, and strategies to minimize its occurrence. By understanding slippage, traders can enhance their trading efficiency and protect their investments from unforeseen losses.

Understanding Slippage

Before diving into strategies to avoid slippage, it's crucial to grasp what slippage is and why it occurs. Slippage represents the difference between the expected price of a trade and the price at which the trade is actually executed. This discrepancy can work both in favor of and against the trader.

Causes of Slippage

Several factors contribute to the occurrence of slippage in the trading world. High market volatility and low liquidity are primary contributors, often leading to rapid price movements before a trade can be executed at the intended price. Additionally, the time it takes for an order to be processed by a broker can result in slippage, especially in fast-moving markets.

Market orders are particularly susceptible to slippage, as they are executed at the best available price, which may not match the expected price. In contrast, limit orders specify a price limit, offering protection against slippage but with no guarantee of execution.

Impact of Slippage on Trading

Slippage can significantly affect trading outcomes, especially for day traders and those who trade on margin. While sometimes slippage can lead to a better-than-expected entry or exit price, often it results in less favorable prices, thereby reducing potential profits or increasing losses.

The unpredictability of slippage makes it a critical factor to consider in risk management strategies. Traders need to be aware of the conditions that increase the risk of slippage and adjust their trading methods accordingly.

Strategies to Minimize Slippage

While it's impossible to eliminate slippage entirely, there are strategies traders can employ to reduce its impact. Understanding these strategies and when to apply them can help traders protect their investments.

Choosing the Right Order Type

Using limit orders instead of market orders is one of the most effective ways to control slippage. Limit orders allow traders to specify the maximum price they are willing to pay for a buy order or the minimum price for a sell order, thus providing a safeguard against unwanted slippage.

However, it's important to note that while limit orders protect against slippage, they do not guarantee execution. In fast-moving markets, a limit order may not be filled if the price moves beyond the specified limit before the order can be executed.

Trading During Peak Liquidity Times

Trading volumes and liquidity vary throughout the trading day. Prices are more likely to experience significant movements during periods of low liquidity, increasing the risk of slippage. To minimize this risk, traders can plan their trades during peak liquidity times, such as when major market sessions overlap.

Understanding the characteristics of different market sessions and the impact of economic announcements can help traders choose the best times to trade, reducing the likelihood of slippage.

Utilizing Slippage Protection Tools

Many trading platforms offer tools and features designed to protect against slippage. For example, some platforms allow traders to set maximum slippage parameters on orders, limiting the acceptable amount of slippage on a trade.

While these tools can be helpful, traders should be aware of their limitations and understand that they may lead to missed trading opportunities in fast-moving markets.

Advanced Strategies for Slippage Management

As traders gain experience in navigating the complexities of the financial markets, they can implement advanced strategies to further mitigate the impact of slippage. One such strategy involves using algorithmic trading systems that can execute trades automatically based on predefined criteria.

Algorithmic trading can help reduce the time it takes to enter or exit a trade, minimizing the potential for slippage. By setting specific parameters and conditions, traders can automate their trading processes and avoid the delays that often lead to slippage.

Implementing Risk Management Techniques

Effective risk management is essential in controlling the impact of slippage on trading outcomes. Traders can utilize techniques such as position sizing, stop-loss orders, and diversification to limit the potential losses resulting from slippage.

By carefully managing their risk exposure and diversifying their portfolios, traders can protect themselves against unexpected price movements that may lead to significant slippage.

Monitoring Market Conditions

Staying informed about market conditions and upcoming events that could impact price movements is crucial in managing slippage. Traders should regularly monitor economic calendars, news releases, and geopolitical developments to anticipate potential market volatility.

By staying ahead of market trends and events, traders can adjust their trading strategies accordingly, reducing the likelihood of slippage affecting their trades.


Slippage is an inherent part of trading that can't be completely avoided. However, by understanding its causes and implementing strategies to minimize its impact, traders can improve their trading efficiency and protect their investments. Choosing the right order type, trading during peak liquidity times, utilizing slippage protection tools, and implementing advanced risk management techniques are practical steps traders can take to manage slippage effectively.

At TIOmarkets, we are committed to providing our clients with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate the complexities of the trading world. By understanding slippage and how to mitigate its effects, traders can make more informed decisions and enhance their trading performance.

Start Trading with Confidence at TIOmarkets

Ready to take control of your trading experience and minimize slippage? Join over 170,000 traders across 170 countries who have chosen TIOmarkets as their trusted forex broker. With access to 300+ instruments across 5 markets, our low-fee platform is designed to maximize your trading potential. Enhance your skills with our comprehensive educational resources and step-by-step guides. Don't let market volatility hold you back. Create a Trading Account today and trade with precision and peace of mind.

Inline Question Image

Risk disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Never deposit more than you are prepared to lose. Professional client’s losses can exceed their deposit. Please see our risk warning policy and seek independent professional advice if you do not fully understand. This information is not directed or intended for distribution to or use by residents of certain countries/jurisdictions including, but not limited to, USA & OFAC. The Company holds the right to alter the aforementioned list of countries at its own discretion.

Join us on social media

TIO Staff

Behind every blog post lies the combined experience of the people working at TIOmarkets. We are a team of dedicated industry professionals and financial markets enthusiasts committed to providing you with trading education and financial markets commentary. Our goal is to help empower you with the knowledge you need to trade in the markets effectively.

24/7 Live Chat