Introduction to MT4 - Find out what MetaTrader 4 can do for you

If you’re new to trading, MetaTrader 4 (MT4) may seem rather technical but don’t let that put you off. The platform is very flexible and suitable for first-time traders.

One of the many advantages of this platform is that you can adjust it to your level of experience. That means, as you’re becoming more familiar with the markets, you can start using more of its features. The platform will never be too technical or not sophisticated enough – it is what you make of it.

Trade forex and automate your trading

MT4 is a platform widely used to trade forex. It allows you to access the financial markets, see live prices, use technical indicators and place your trades. You can automate your trading on MT4 with Expert Advisors (EAs), which is software you can programme or buy to execute trades when certain parameters are met.

Know your MT4

No matter what your trading experience is, you should make sure you feel comfortable with the platforms and the features you’re using. It’s hard enough to keep track of what’s happening in the markets and how that relates to your strategy without having to worry about not getting the most out of your platform.

We can give you a complete trading experience on MT4

We give you a choice of instruments, so that you can build a diverse portfolio. We offer over 60 currency pairs on our Executive and Premiere Accounts.

In addition to forex, you can trade precious metals and contracts for difference (CFDs).

Use a range of features

MT4 presents users with a multitude of tools to help you trade. Perhaps MT4's greatest functional attribute is that it can execute Expert Advisor (EA) strategies for you. EAs allow you to automate your trading. However, before you get to this point you should tackle the basics.

Learn how to place trades

The main functionality of any trading platform is to place trades, so learning the mechanics of doing this should be the first step. At the same time it’s a good idea to learn how to set your stop and limit orders. No matter what your trading strategy is, risk management is so important and cannot be ignored.

You can soon move on to the next stage

Charting functionality should be next on your list of priorities when you learn how to use MT4. Charting is a tool most traders use to make their trading decisions.

Once you have covered off all of the basic functionalities in these areas you will be ready to place trades.

Making informed decisions is an important part of becoming a successful trader. Once you have opened a MetaTrader 4 (MT4) account, we would like to take you through the basics of how to start trading so you feel confident in choosing what instruments to trade as well as placing trades.

Step 1 
Highlighting opportunities

Knowing what and when to trade is the biggest decision traders have to make. There are so many trading strategies out there that sometimes it can cloud your judgement. Many obstacles can get in your way, so it’s important that you don’t over complicate what can already be a complex subject.

Sometimes the world of trading can confuse you with jargon. There are numerous instruments to trade that it may become difficult to decide on which one you should trade at any given time. However, there are a couple of things to remember:

  • You don’t always have to be in a trade. Sometimes not placing a trade can be just as profitable as placing a trade.
  • When it comes to charting, complicated does not necessarily mean successful.

Step 2 
Placing a trade

Placing a trade often gets overlooked as just something you have to do, but very few people take time to learn exactly what the best way to do it is exactly.

When you place your trade, there are a few things you should think about, rather than just jump straight in:

  • Make sure you are placing the correct trade. If you don’t, you may end up in a situation where you place a trade and then instantly phone the Client Services team because you placed the wrong one. Make sure your instrument, order type and position size are all correct before you place the trade. 

Step 3 
Risk management

Risk management is the single most important part of trading. No matter where you go or what you read on trading, there will always be a section on risk management. Using the tools in place such as ‘stop loss’ and ‘take profit’ orders can be the difference between your trading account lasting for five years or five hours.

There is no escaping it – when you trade, you will lose money at one point in your trading journey. Using a ‘stop loss’ is the way you make sure that losing a trade does not end up wiping you out.

Bear in mind:

  • You don’t have to be right every time you trade to make money. Using a ‘stop loss’ will make sure that the times you are wrong your losses are limited. A limit order to take profit will make sure when you are right you make the most of the profit available.
  • Slippage can happen on your stops, which is something that is not unique to the broker you trade with – it happens with everyone. Be sure to be aware that when your stop is about to be filled, you may get slipped and there is not much we as traders can do about it.

Charts are the most popular tool for traders to make decisions about when to open or close a trade. Follow chart patterns and signals to spot trading opportunities and manage risk effectively. The MetaTrader 4 (MT4) platform has an in-built charting package that helps traders make informed decisions.

Charts can help you make informed market predictions

General charting strategies and technical analysis rest on the assumption that indicators that were important in the past will become important again in the future.

There are three more assumptions that charting/technical analysis rests on:

  • The market has three movements, all occurring at the same time – primary, secondary and intraday
  • Averages discount everything
  • The market reflects all available information

In a way you trade on market sentiment

All factors combined should be reflected in the price level found in the markets. Prices represent the total sum of hopes, fears and expectations of all market participants. Of course, the only way to view the price in this manner is to view it through the charts.

Remember, charting doesn't always guarantee success and you should consider these points:

  • You do not always have to be in a trade. Sometimes not placing a trade can be the best solution.
  • When it comes to charting, complicated does not necessarily mean successful.

We execute all of your trades with market execution.

What is market execution?

A market execution order is one that's executed at the next price available in the market. There are no requotes, but the price will not necessarily be the one you saw on the screen when you placed the order – this is known as slippage. Slippage is an occurrence which is common to all institutional and retail brokers who offer market execution. The price the order is filled at may sometimes differ from the price seen on the platform because:

  • the price may have moved from the last market snapshot, or
  • the trade volume you requested may be larger than the volume available in the market at the best tradable bid/offer (ask) price shown on the screen.

Can I place stop loss and take profit orders?

With market execution you are unable to add stop loss and take profit orders when placing a trade, because the entry price which you see on the screen could change prior to the position being opened. Stop loss and take profit levels can be set once your trade is open.

The Benefits with market execution?

The main benefit of market execution is that you can trade without the interruption of requotes on FX. This is because your order is executed immediately, at the next available price in the market. So your order will be filled even if it's at a different price to the one you saw when placing the trade.