I guess profit must be a prime motivator for many, probably most, traders. But I don't think that is all. I guess it also depends on whether one is relying on trading for income or capital building or for pure interest. I think forex trading keeps one actively focussed on world events and developments since so many of them impact on currency values. It helps one understand the fiscal and monetary policies and economic developments in one's own country- and if one happens to be an ex-pat living in another country then exchange levels are almost automatically a point of constant interest. This is valuable in its own right even without a profit motive.