Forex Quotes: Pips and the Big Figure

The last two digits of an exchange rate are the points or pips. The rest of the rate is called big figure.

As a general rule, a pip is one-hundredth of a ‘cent’, for example USD 0.0001, EUR 0.0001, CAD 0.0001.

There are exceptions: for example, when quoting the dollar/yen rate, a pip is one hundredth of a yen (JPY 0.01)

Exchange rates are usually quoted to five figures. The first three digits of the quote are the big figures.


Dealers often assume everyone knows what a big figure in major currencies is at the time.

Deals are often conducted without any mention of the big figure, and only the pips are quoted. It is good practice, however, always to state the big figure to avoid the possibility of errors, for example when the market is moving rapidly.

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