The convenience of online trading and the introduction of advanced electronic trading platforms has made this form of trading highly popular. While there are several trading platforms available, MetaTrader 4 or MT4 is one of the most widely used platforms for online forex trading.
Developed by MetaQuotes Software and introduced in 2005, the software is licensed to foreign exchange brokers, who in turn provide it to their clients. A highly effective way of carrying out forex trades, MT4 consists of both a client and server component, with the latter run by the brokerage firm and the client software provided to customers.
Traders can see live streaming of prices and charts to make informed trade decisions and manage their accounts. Let’s find out more about this trading platform and how it can be downloaded and customised to suit individual trading needs.
This Windows-based application is highly popular amongst forex traders because it allows traders to analyse prices, place and manage trades, and employ automated trading techniques. Easily downloadable, this platform prompts users to first open a free demo account, which allows testing of all the features incorporated in the software. Some major features of this electronic trading platform include:
Apart from these features, MetaTrader also comes with Mobile and iPad app versions that allow traders to access the forex market from anywhere in the world, and at any time. Connected to more than 2,000 broker servers, this app consists of 30 popular technical indicators and 24 analytical objects, a full-fledged trading system with two execution modes, and 4 order types. Access to the latest financial news and real-time symbol quotes are the other salient features of the MetaTrader iPad and mobile versions.
MetaTrader4 can easily be downloaded and it comes with:
A major advantage of using the MetaTrader trading platform is its customisation tools that help traders customise charts with indicators, grids and period separators. Some major customisations possible with MetaTrader are:
All these customisation tools help traders save a lot of time, while placing their trade orders quickly and smoothly. Here’s a look at some of the key ways you can customise this platform.
How to Customise the MT4 Platform
The first thing that you can do to personalize MT4 is to change the appearance of the charts to whatever helps you understand them more easily. For this, you will need to:
When you have completed choosing your options, you will need to save your choices as a template. For this, click the “Template” icon in the toolbar, and choose “Save Template” alternately, you could right-click on the chart itself, to select and save the template.
The key to placing successful trades is to choose your indicators wisely, based on your trading strategy. MT4 allows you to do this through some simple steps:
MetaTrader 4 also allows you to zoom in and out, and to choose the timeframe. In fact, you can choose any timeframe, from one minute to even one month.
How to Set Up Expert Advisors
An Expert Advisor (EA) is a programme or robot on MT4 that automatically places orders for you. However, you will need to instruct the EA on the criteria it should follow to decide when to place trades. This is done by setting specific “if-then” rules for the EA to follow. To use this facility, you need to:
Now your EA is linked to the chart you wish to follow to make trading decisions.
MT4 is a user-friendly and intuitive platform that is easy to customize to suit the way you like to trade. However, as with everything else, knowledge and practice are the only way to make the most of this platform.
If you liked this educational article please consult our Risk Disclosure Notice before starting to trade. Trading leveraged products involves a high level of risk. You may lose more than your invested capital.
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