HOW TO TRADE WITH METATRADER 4 and 5
📊 MetaTrader is an electronic trading platform that was pioneered by the developers, MetaQuotes Software. The software company has released a number of versions since it started up in 2002 but hit the jackpot with a significantly enhanced version called MetaTrader 4 that it took to market in 2005. In 2010, MetaQuotes Software introduced the significantly re-coded MetaTrader 5.
📊 Today, MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is one of the most widely-used online trading platforms for retail foreign exchange (forex) speculative traders. MetaTrader 5 (MT5) is a more advanced trading platform and is growing in popularity as investors find value in its superior features. Metatrader 6 – coming soon.
📊 Find out how to trade with MetaTrader 4 in this guide and more about the revolutionary features of MetaTrader 5. Join the ranks of hundreds of thousands of speculative forex traders who enjoy the benefits of these two advanced electronic trading platforms.
What is mobile trading?
🗠 Mobile trading allows investors to access and manage their trading accounts from their smartphones or mobile devices using wireless technology. This means traders are not restricted to trading from their desktop computer and have the freedom to trade wherever and whenever they would like to trade.
How does mobile trading work?
🗠 Mobile trading is done using a mobile trading app of your choice loaded on your Smartphone (Android and iPhone) or a mobile device such as a iPad or laptop. It’s been possible for a long time to check your stock performance using livestreaming on a mobile device, but the mobile trading apps now allow you to execute trades and manage your account from anywhere.
🗠 The Microsoft Windows-based applications are hugely popular because they allow the user to write his or her own trading scripts and robots that automate the trading function. An investor only needs a Smartphone and a trading account on a broker’s terminal to access the information, transfer funds to and from their trading account and trade in real-time.
What are the benefits of a mobile trading platform?
💹 Mobile trading apps open up online trading to individuals who’re interested in trading on the side or are learning to trade full time, so now trading is not only the domain of major brokers. You can trade from your sofa at home or a beach chair on holiday. The popular mobile trading apps offer commission-free trading which makes them the cheapest and most convenient way for your average man in the street to trade.
💹 Trading is all about getting the timing right. When you spot an opportunity, there’s no time to wait to get back to your office to access your trading account from your desktop computer. In a matter of minutes, that opportunity becomes a missed opportunity. The rise of mobile trading apps and advancements in wireless technology mean you never miss a trade.
💹 The mobile trading platforms use the same security protocols required of any Web-based portals so there’s no need to be too concerned when transferring funds electronically to your trading account. It’s as safe as buying something on Amazon or booking accommodation with Expedia.
💹 The only downside of mobile trading some say is it’s almost too easy to trade which can lead to users over-trading. As tempting as it may be to trade on the move, it’s wise to only trade when you can focus on the trading market and make considered decisions.
What is MetaTrader?
💹MetaTrader is a trading platform used primarily for mobile foreign exchange (forex) trading as well as exchange-traded futures and contract for difference (CFD) markets. It acts as the link between global trading markets, your broker and your computer or mobile device.
💹 The MetaTrader platform facilitates margin trading. This is method of trading where funds are provided by a third party, usually an investment broker. Margin trading is used in stock, commodity and more recently, cryptocurrency markets; and allows traders to access capital to trade on positions. It’s especially popular in low-volatility markets, such as the international forex market.
💹 Currently, there are two MetaTrader trading platforms on the market: MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Open your FREE Metatrader Account Now
Who uses MetaTrader?
💹 Forex traders either use MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5, or both, to view real-time currency prices, open and manage trade orders, and get comprehensive technical and fundamental analysis. Brokers use the MT4 or MT5 platform to reach a broader investment audience.
How does MetaTrader work?
📈 MetaTrader is a software programme that can only be accessed through a reputable broker that offers MT4 or MT5 as one of its trading platforms. You set up a trading account on the broker’s terminal and follow the instructions of the broker to buy and sell forex and other trades.
📈 Both trading platforms have a built-in editor and compiler which provides access to a free library of software, articles and self-help tutorials that are constructed by a user, usually the investment broker. The software uses a proprietary scripting language (MQL4 or MQL5) which allows users to develop expert advisors, custom indicators and trading scripts.
📈 MetaTrader is widely popular, mainly because it supports algorithmic trading (otherwise known as automated trading). The latter is a means of executing orders using automated pre-programming trading scripts. Algorithmic trading is particularly popular with investment banks, pension funds, mutual funds and hedge funds because it allows these institutional traders to execute large orders.
📈 MetaTrader supports two types of trading orders:
- Pending orders: orders executed only when the price reaches a pre-defined level
- Market orders; orders that can be executed in four modes:
- instant execution, at the price displayed
- request execution, price quote requested and trader decides to buy or sell
- market execution, with broker’s price even if it is different from what is displayed
- exchange execution, processed by the exchange
How does MetaQuotes language work?
📊 MetaQuotes Software language (MQL) is a programme language that’s unique to the trading platform and produces a sequence of commands used to create specific exchange strategies, facilitate automatic trading robots, produce market and custom indicators and tools to analyse information. MQL is written primarily for the forex market and trading financial instruments based on the information provided.
MQL is used to execute the following functions:
☑️ Expert Advisors
The mobile trading platform is supported by a range of automated programmes called Expert Advisors, or what the marketplace commonly refers to as EAs. These terminal programmes have been developed in MetaQuotes Language 4 (MQL4) and are used to automate trades.
EAs rapidly analyse technical price data and manage trades based on signals it receives. EAs take the hassle and anxiety out of trading by doing all the work for you.
You can create a built-in EA using the MetaEditor which is part of the MQL4 programme. First set up the EA using the client terminal settings and launch it by imposing it in a chart. To shut down an EA, remove it from the same chart.
Instead of creating your own EA, you can buy or rent one from the Market tab in the trading platform. MetaTrader 4 has over 1 700 trading robots and more than 2 100 technical indicators that you can rent or buy from one month to one year.
☑️ Custom indicators
Custom indicators are created in the MetaTrader programme using the MetaEditor that is embedded in the software. Indicators are only used to analyse price changes on symbols, and are not used for actual trading.
Custom indicators are written independently of the functions integrated into the trading terminal and allow traders to analyse information to determine whether a current trend will remain in place or turn around.
Scripts handle operations at the beginning of a trade order. They allow you to analyse and calculate the risk associated with a buy or sell instruction as well as manage operations, export and import data and create trade orders in closed markets.
The Library feature is a set of functions that allows the programme to store and distribute frequently-used blocks of custom programmes.
An Include File is source text of the most frequently-used blocks of custom programmes which includes Expert Advisors, scripts, custom indicators and libraries.
MetaTrader 4 versus MetaTrader 5
📈 MetaTrader 4 was designed for forex and futures trading. Traders use it to analyse financial markets, perform basic as well as advanced trading operations, run trading robots known as Expert Advisors and copy deals of other traders.
📈 MetaTrader 4 uses MQL4 (programming language) and features revolutionary tools used to develop testing and optimisation of trading robots. It makes algorithmic trading available to a vast number of traders around the world and is prized as a reliable trading tool.
📈 With MetaTrader 4, you have access to a wide range of analytical tools. Traders can see the price dynamics in detail, where each symbol can be displayed in 9 time-frames from one minute to one month. Added to this are 30 built-in technical indicators and 24 graphic objects that ensure pricing and market movements can be thoroughly analysed to identify trends and determine entry and exit points.
📊MetaTrader 5 is a multi-asset trading software system that is designed for trading forex, stock instruments and futures. It’s regarded as faster, more reliable and more convenient than MetaTrader 4 and has more functionality with new advanced features.
📊MetaTrader 5 offers superior tools for technical and fundamental analysis. A standout benefit is its algorithmic trading feature which allows investors to trade automatically using robots and trading signals. Although still widely used for forex trading, it also supports the hedging method which means traders can open multiple positions on the same financial instrument (either in the opposite or same direction).
📊 In addition to superior trading functionality, MetaTrader 5 offers advanced features for research and market analysis. This includes its progressive Depth of Market (DOM) feature which generates tick chart and time and sales information as well as a facility that allows separate accounting of orders and trades.
📊The trading platform provides for two order accounting modes; the netting mode is adopted on exchange markets, while the hedging method is used for forex trading. Investors can buy and sell currency pairs, equities and futures with the One Click Trading function and the Market Depth option.
📊MetaTrader 5 takes it to the next level with a charting system that can display symbols in 21 time-frames, from one minute to one month. Short-term price fluctuations can be analysed alongside long-term trading market movement.
📊Added to this, MetaTrader 5 provides traders with fundamental analysis tools such as financial updates and media reports as well as an economic calendar which can be used to forecast price dynamics of financial instruments. It’s a thoroughly comprehensive trading platform more suited to investors with advanced trading requirements.
Which is better? MT4 or MT5?
☑️ Contrary to popular belief; MetaTrader 5 (MT5) is not an upgrade of MetaTrader 4 (MT4). Both provide cutting-edge automated trading systems with expert advisors but each serve a very different trading function. MT4 was built primarily for forex traders while MT5 provides traders with access to CFDs, stocks and futures as well as forex.
☑️ MT4 is still the most popular software product offered by MetaQuotes Software and largely appeals to investors who prefer a simplified mobile platform for forex trading. It’s a straightforward trading app that does the job.
☑️ MT5 has a number of advanced tools that appeal to a different level of trader. It’s been slow to take off in the market but it’s gaining some traction as more and more traders find value in its superior analysis features.
Will MetaTrader 5 replace MetaTrader 4?
💹 MetaQuotes Software announced in 2018 that it plans to gradually faze out MT4 and replace it with MT5. The software developer no longer sells MT4 to brokers but the thousands of brokers that still offer it as part of their service offering will likely continue to do so because it’s such as popular forex and CFD trading platform.
💹 MT5 offers superior analysis and trading features; however, MT4 has been installed on so many computers and mobile devices world-wide and the retail market is resistant to making the change over to MT5. MT4 is regarded as stable, it works and is easy and convenient to use.
YOUR GUIDE TO METATRADER 4
Even though MetaTrader 5 was introduced to the market almost a decade ago, it has failed to push MetaTrader 4 off its perch. This is largely because the market seems to prefer the simplicity of MT4; choosing straightforward functionality over the ramped up features of MT5.
Let’s look at common questions people ask about MT4 to help you understand this popular mobile trading software programme. The process of opening a trading account and trading on MT5 is the same; the difference lies in the improved features that take MT5 to the next level of trading appeal.
Top 5 reasons why MetaTrader 4 is so popular?
🗠 In 2018, MT4 market share surprisingly gained traction at a time that the market predicted the downturn of the trading platform. Total trading volumes outside of Japan that were traded via MT4 grew from 50 percent at the turn of the first quarter to 55 percent at the end of the third quarter.
🗠 MT5 was released in 2010 and almost a decade later instead of it dislodging MT4’s rock-solid domination in the marketplace, the vastly-improved trading platform continues to tail in MT4’s wake.
🗠There are a few reasons why MT4 continues to hold its own as the industry standard in the forex market but the general consensus is that combined with being rich in features and having everything a trader needs, its simplicity is what keeps everyone keen.
MT4 is easy to use
MetaQuotes Software simplified MT4 by removing a lot of unnecessary functions that overcomplicated a trading platform. You can access vital information such as charts, indicators and prices at the click of a button.
MT4 is reliable
Reliability is a key feature of MT4; having been put to the test by hundreds of thousands of traders over the past 15 years. MT4 is optimised for a range of mobile devices and accommodates slow internet connections and low-powered devices. In other words, MT4 is truly mobile in that it’s reliable anywhere and on any device.
MT4 is multi-device compatible
MT4 is compatible with a range for devices; from a Windows-drive desktop computer to iPhone, Android and web-based tablets. More importantly, one account login works simultaneously across all devices which means a trader can set up one device and move between other devices as he or she goes about the day.
MT4 pioneered powerful EA innovation
MetaQuotes Software introduced to the market one of the most powerful trading innovations, namely expert advisors (EAs). These are small portions of software code that are written by users (usually brokers) and used on the trading platform to automate the trading strategy.
EAs available from the MT4 app store
EAs facilitate 24/7 forex trading; and MetaQuotes made it easier than ever to buy or rent EAs by setting up an app store on its platform. If you’re a broker with time constraints or a newbie trader without programming skills to write an EA, you can go to the MetaTrader app store to shop for what you need.
How much does it cost to download MetaTrader 4?
📊 The MetaTrader products are free to download and install. There is also no fee charged for opening a Demo account and many brokers offer a free Live trading account.
📊 Forex brokers make their money by charging a commission to execute buy or sell orders; in other words, per trade or spread (the difference between the bid price and ask price on a trade).
How to download MetaTrader 4
📊 You can download the MT4 software programme on your computer or mobile device but you need to connect to a broker’s server to actually trade. Select a reputable broker that operates in a time zone that suits you and go to the Sign Up page / Log in Page to find and register for their MT4 service.
How to open a demo or live account on MetaTrader 4
MetaTrader 4 (MT4) can be accessed through your desktop computer, Smartphone or mobile device. To open a demo or live trading account, you need to go through a reputable broker that offers MT4 as one of its trading platforms. Set up a demo or live trading account with that broker, and you can start trading with MT4.
Step 1: Set up a MetaTrader 4 account
📊 Download and install MT4
📊 Fill in your account details
📊 Record your account login information before completing the registration process
Step 2: Practice using a demo trading account
📊 It’s strongly recommended you get to know the mobile trading platform better and its superior functionalities using a demo trading account. Proceed to trading with a live account only once you feel comfortable with MT4 and are familiar with the upside and downside of mobile forex trading.
MT4: Demo versus live account
If you are new to forex trading and have only just downloaded MT4 on your mobile device; it’s a good idea to set up a demo account and practice trading using virtual/simulated money until you have the knowledge and experience to open a real forex trading account and trade with your own money.
A demo account works in exactly the same way as a live account but without the risk of losing your hard-earned money on poor trades. You have access to the EAs, charting and advanced MT4 features and can use the demo account to devise a trading strategy that suits you.
When you open a forex live account, you deposit and trade with real money once you have validated your live account. The difference between a demo trading account and a live one is you’ll see different spreads on pairs in a live account, execution time will vary and you may suffer from slippage in some trades.
How to place a trade order in MetaTrader 4
You can enter a trade via market execution or via pending order. After you’ve entered an order with MetaTrader 4, you have the option of modifying it.
- Enter a trade via Market Execution
- Select the New Order button in the standard toolbar.
- Select the currency pair you want to trade from the dialogue box.
- From the Order Type drop-down list, select Market Execution.
- Choose and select the size of your position which is expressed in terms of standard lot sizes; where one standard lot is worth 100 000 units.
- Select BUY or SELL on the currency pair from the dialogue box to execute your trade.
- Enter a trade via a Pending Order
- Select the New Order button in the standard toolbar.
- Select the currency pair you want to trade from the dialogue box.
- From the Order Type drop-down list, select Pending Order.
Select BUY or SELL on the currency pair from the dialogue box to execute your trade; choosing one of 4 options:
- Buy Limit: select if you plan to go longer at a level lower than market price
- Sell Limit: select if you plan to go shorter at a level higher than market price
- Buy Stop: select if you plan to go longer at a level higher than market price
- Sell Stop: select if you plan to go shorter at a level lower than market price
Once you have made your selection of Order Type, type in the price you wish to enter the market.
Enter the size of the position; fill in the Stop Loss and Take Profit fields; and set an expiry date on your order if required.
Complete the order by selecting the Place button.
How to modify a trade order in MetaTrader 4
- Select and open up the Trade tab where you will find all your trade orders, which includes their entry prices, size of position, stop losses and profit targets.
- To add or modify a Stop Loss or Profit Target:
- Select the trade by right-clicking on the button.
- Select Modify or Delete Order.
- Fill in your preferred level for the Stop Loss and Take Profit field.
- Complete the modification process by selecting the Modify button.
How to deposit money into MetaTrader 4
📊 You make a deposit using ForexMart in your demo or live trading account. Go to the Finance tab and select Deposit; choose your preferred online payment system and the ForexMart feature will facilitate your deposit request.
How to withdraw money from MetaTrader 4
📊 Again use the ForexMart feature to withdraw money from your MT4 trading account. Go to My Accounts and select Withdraw from the drop-down tab; choose your preferred withdrawal method, fill out the corresponding fields and the ForexMart feature will facilitate your withdrawal request.
How to buy and sell forex on MetaTrader 4
Buy and sell forex on MT4 in 4 easy steps:
Step 1: Select the currency pair you want to trade
- Open the Market Watch window; double click on the Symbol for the currency pair you want to trade. Market Watch also shows CFDs and other popular trading instruments.
Step 2: Select the number of lots you want to trade
- Open the Volume drop-down box and select the size of position you’d like to trade.
- Either click on the red Sell button or the blue Buy button.
Step 3: Confirm the trade
- Once you have select the Buy or Sell function; you will be instructed to confirm the trade. The new tab will confirm the number and price of the order.
- Press Okay to confirm the trade and then you will find yourself back at the main screen.
Step 4: Close an open position
- If you have any positions open or orders pending; double click on each one to close them. You’ll be instructed to confirm your request to close the position.
How to change a time zone on MetaTrader 4
The MT4 time zone you trade in depends on what broker you use. You personally cannot change the time zone on the software programme. If the time zone does not suit you, the only option you have is to change to a broker that works within your preferred time zone.
How to check your MT4 trade history and account balance
Your trade history and account information is automatically stored in the MT4 Terminal. Look for the Terminal window at the bottom of your screen and you’ll find the following tabs:
- Trade: your account balance, margin, free margin, margin level, equity and any open positions and pending orders
- Account history: a complete history of all trade orders you have placed; includes date and time, type, size, instrument, price at open, take-profit and stop-loss levels, price and time of closure, swap fees and profit.
- Journal: a list of actions taken on your MT4 terminal, including dates and times
DOWNLOAD METATRADER 4 FOR FREE HERE
YOUR GUIDE TO METATRADER 5
💹 MetaTrader 5 (MT5) possesses all the revolutionary features of MT4 plus so much more. MetaQuotes Software built-in more advanced trading tools and indicators for greater trading control, improved analysis and decision-making.
💹 The process of downloading MT5, opening a trading account and trading with the mobile trading platform is much the same as what we’ve covered with MT4; so let’s look instead at the advanced features that the software developers bought to the market with MT5.
Why switch to MetaTrader 5?
💹 MT5 took the revolutionary features of MT4 to the next level but the trading platform was actually designed for a separate purpose; and that was to trade markets other than forex (in order to attract non-forex traders). This includes stocks and commodities (traded as futures contract) which MT5 can do because it is able to plug into a centralised trading exchange.
If you have to draw a direct comparison to its predecessor, MT5 has two significant advantages over MT4.
💹 Firstly, MT5 uses MQL5 which allows ‘black box’ programming. What this means is it is easier to programme and provides a better framework for users to develop trading robots and expert advisors. MT5 provides a back-testing function that allows users to execute programmed trading strategies at a much faster speed.
Secondly, MT5 allows simultaneous multi-currency pair back testing. Combined with the advantages of ‘black box’ programming, this ramped up feature dramatically speeds up back-testing procedures.
MT5 & MT4 feature comparison
Programming language used
MT5 = MQL5; a specialised high-level object-orientated programming language used to create trading robots and technical indicators; based on the concept of C++ programming language
MT4 = MQL4; an integrated programming language used to develop trading strategies that allow users to create trading robots, technical indicators, scripts and function libraries
Number of pending orders: used to request a broker to buy or sell a financial security under pre-defined conditions in the future
MT5 = 6
MT4 = 4
Technical indicators: automatically detect patterns in financial instrument price dynamics which help users make better trading decisions
MT5 = 38
MT4 = 30
Analytical/graphic tools: analytical objects that help identify price trends and cycles and define support or resistance levels; includes geometric shapes, channels, Gann, Fibonacci and Elliott tools
MT5 = 46
MT4 = 24
Timeframes: time intervals where symbols representing quotes on financial instruments are grouped from one minute to one month
MT5 = 21
MT4 = 9
Economic calendar: integrated fundamental calendar includes publications on macroeconomic indicators of various countries that affect financial instrument prices; provides real-time data collected from public sources providing traders with up-to-date indicators as soon as they are released
MT5 = available
MT4 = not available
Hedging: allows users to conduct multiple trade in the same or opposite direction of the same symbol; if a user has an open position at a symbol and requests a new deal, a new position is opened
MT5 = supports hedging system
MT4 = supports hedging system
Built-in email system: users can receive important information from a broker that goes straight to the terminal via email
MT5 = available with attachment facility
MT4 = available without attachment facility
Embedded MQL5 community chat: facility that allows trader/brokers to direct chat on the platform
MT5 = available
MT4 = not available
Trading robot testing and optimisation: a built in strategy tester which enables testing of EAs on multiple currencies
MT5 = multi-threaded for multi-currency and real ticks
MT4 = single threaded
Step By Step Tutorial of Metatrader 5
Download MetaTrader 5 for free for PC, Android and iPhone and start trading on the most advanced and features-rich mobile trading platform.
Metatrader 6 – How to get started
💹 Metatrader 6 is in progress of being developed and not yet out of its beta testing version – Watch this space for release dates on the metatrader 6 in 2022.
Choosing the right broker is regarded by seasoned traders as more important than choosing a trading platform. MetaQuotes Software has produced two outstanding trading platforms that are reliable, intuitive and easy to use. What you need over and above that is a broker that offers exceptional customer support and with whom you are assured your money is secure.
It’s important that you choose a broker that is regulated and/or licensed with an international or local regulatory authority. In addition, your broker should be able to offer you a certain amount of leverage so that you can increase your investment amount if required.
Other important facilities that a reputable broker should offer is a multi-disciplinary trading platform, the option of a free demo account, and the option to trade in the major currencies as well as in bitcoins.
It helps if your broker provides training support for trading forex and other financial instruments as well as educational material to improve your trading knowledge and expertise. To sweeten the deal, your broker should offer loyalty bonuses and promotions which could significantly boost your trading account balance. Coming soon : Metatrader 6