Welcome to our Metatrader page! We believe Metatrader, in in particular MT4, is the best trading software since its launch in 2005, and until today. If you want to understand why, Read our comparison pieces below:
- Metatrader 4 VS Metatrader 5
- Metatrader VS NinjaTrader
- Metatrader VS cTrader
- Forex Platform Review & Comparison
Best MT4 Brokers:
Best Broker for MetaTrader:
Additional Topics Covered on this MetaTrader Guide:
* MT4 Market Execution
* MT4 Bridge
* Expert Advisor for Metatrader
* Building your own EA
* MetaTrader 5 Review
* MetaTrader 6?
It’s a Long Guide! Read it carefully!
MT4 Instant and Market Execution Explained
>When placing an order in MetaTrader 4 you may have noticed the software states the execution type. The MetaTrader 4 platform supports both Instant and Market execution, but you will find that many brokerages will only offer one type of execution. What execution type the brokerage offers is dependent on what business model the brokerage is using.
STP and ECN brokerages will use Market Execution. Market execution will involve the brokerage placing your trade with one of the firm’s liquidity providers. The fact that the trade is being placed with a liquidity provider means the trader will be unable to set stop loss and take profit levels before the order is placed. This is due to the fact that the price at which the position is opened is not yet known, so it is not possible to set a stop loss and take profit at a particular level. Traders however can easily modify the position after the order has been placed with a liquidity provider. While this can be slight a hassle, it is not the end of the world. Though there is a slight risk that the market could move significantly against you while you are setting the stop loss and take profit levels.
Brokerages operating a dealing desk will use Instant Execution. When a trader places an order using Instant execution the trade will be instantly executed at the price displayed on the screen. With instant execution traders are able to set stop loss and take profit levels before the order has been placed. The brokerage may come back with a re-quote if they choose not to fill your order at the quoted price. With instant execution traders can be safe in the knowledge that there stop loss and take profit levels will have been set the instant the position is opened.
Instant Execution vs. Market Execution
While Instant execution allows a trader to set up stop losses and take profit levels only brokerages operating a dealing desk will offer such execution. Those wanting to use MetaTrader 4 with an STP/ECN brokerage will have to deal with market execution. The only downside to Market execution with MetaTrader 4 is that traders will have to manually set their stop loss levels and take profit levels. Traders will simply have to be careful during periods of high volatility and to remember to set appropriate stops and take profit levels.
Metatrader 4 Bridge
With the specialist software developer primarily targeting market makers and not ECN/STP brokerages during the development of the MetaTrader 4 platform. This is due to the fact that vast majority of retail brokerages at the time operated dealing desks, with the ECN/STP brokerage model only coming to prominence in the past few years.
MT4 Bridging Software & Execution
This means that the MetaTrader 4 platform is not capable of passing through client orders to a brokerages liquidity providers without a piece additional bridging software. A number of third party software companies, aggregated liquidity providers and prime brokerages have developed their own bridging software which allows for users of the MetaTrader 4 platform to access interbank liquidity via the trading platform and their retail brokerage.
The bridging solution used by a brokerage can have an impact on the quality of execution that a trader receives. The bridging solution sits on a brokerages MetaTrader 4 server and then passes on orders placed with the brokerage to the firm’s selected liquidity providers. Different bridging solutions have different capabilities, which can directly impact on execution quality. For instance, different solutions can handle different volumes of simultaneous trades, which can lead traders to experience delayed execution during periods where large numbers of orders are being placed. Additionally, some bridging solutions allow large trades to be placed across multiple liquidity providers while others do not. This means that the quality of the bridging solution used by an ECN/STP brokerage can be directly correlated with the quality of execution a trader receives.
MT4 to MT4 Bridging
MetaTrader 4 to MetaTrader 4 bridging solutions are also available and are used by a number of smaller retail Forex brokerages. An MT4 to MT4 solution, allows for a brokerage to submit orders to another brokerage also using the MetaTrader 4 platform. This means that smaller retail brokerages can access the liquidity of larger brokerages of their choice. Typically, MT4 to MT4 bridging software has the capability to allow brokerages to then mark-up their spreads and/or charge commission. Such bridging solutions has allowed a number of new smaller firms enter into the brokerage market simply sourcing their liquidity from one or more larger Forex brokerages.
Expert Advisory in MT4 For Beginners
Expert Advisors are programs which allow individuals to automatically trade the financial markets via the MetaTrader trading platform. There are a number of different ways to build Expert Advisor’s, and it is now possible to build your own custom Expert Advisor’s without having to code them yourself.
An Expert Advisor, often shortened to EA by those in the know, is a program which can be used in conjunction with the MetaTrader 4 platform to automatically trade the markets. The program will follow the instructions of the programmer exactly and trading through EA’s is extremely popular.
One clear advantage to using an Expert Advisor, is that if you already have a working trading system in place you can simply program an EA to undertake all your trading activity for you. If your brokerage offers a VPS service, it may be possible to run your Expert Advisor 24 hours a day meaning that you never miss a trading opportunity. It also allows you to easily trade multiple currency pairings at the same time, which can otherwise be quite demanding.
Traders should be warned that there are many unscrupulous individuals selling EA’s that don’t perform as advertised. It is recommended that traders program their own Expert Advisors, to ensure that they fully understand their own trading system. That is not to say their aren’t some good EA’s available for purchase, but finding a good affordable Expert Advisor can be a real challenge. It is possible to create an Expert Advisor yourself though this not particularly easy, though a number of tools have made creating an Expert Advisor much easier.
Transferring the File(s)
- Either create or download an Expert Advisor. Make sure you make note of where you saved the relevant files.
- Select and Copy the files you need for installing your Expert Advisor.
- Find out where your version of MetaTrader 4 is installed. The standard location where MT4 is installed is the C:\Program Files folder. Look for your installation of MetaTrader 4.
- Within the MetaTrader 4 folder, look for the Experts sub-folder. Open this up and paste your Expert Advisor into the folder. If an Expert Advisor uses .dll files these will likely need to be placed in the libraries folder.
- If the computer asks for permission just click: Continue.
Installing onto MetaTrader 4
- Launch your version of the MetaTrader 4 platform.
- On the left hand side navigator, look for the Expert Advisors tab. Clicking on the plus sign will open up a menu of all the available Expert Advisors.
- Click on the EA you want to use and drag it onto the relevant tab.Adjusting your EA’s settings
- Once you have dragged your Expert Advisor onto a chart, a pop-box will appear showing your settings.
- Make sure all your settings are how you want them before clicking Ok.
Once you have followed the above steps you will be ready go. It is strongly recommended that you undertake trial trading using a demo account or alternatively you undertake back-testing to get an idea of how the Expert Advisor is likely to perform. To stop an Expert Advisor from running simply Click the Expert Advisor button found above the charting screen.
Expert Advisor Set Up In MT4 / 5
Expert Advisor’s are written in the MetaQuotes Language, with the MetaTrader 4 and 5 platforms using different versions of the MetaQuotes Language. This means that Expert Advisor’s written in MQL4 will only work on MetaTrader 4, with the two languages not being compatible. For those with no coding experience writing an Expert Advisor will likely be quite challenging, with the MetaQuotes language being based on object-orientated C++ language.
The official MetaQuotes Language 4 site does include complete documentation explaining all the features of the language and how they can be used. This documentation is squarely aimed at those who have previously programming experience. Those who have programmed in a language based on C should be able to pick the MQL4/5 in a relatively short space of time. There is not however any particularly accessible tutorials which would allow a complete newcomer to programming to learn the language, this likely due to the strong similarities between MQL and C++.
Use An Expert Advisor Builder
There are a number of different tools which allow traders to build Expert Advisors without having to write any code themselves. These tools make it much easier to build an Expert Advisor (EA), but generally these tools are unable to build some more sophisticated Expert Advisors which traders may want to build.
Expert Advisor Builder for MetaTrader 4
The Expert Advisor Builder for MetaTrader 4 is free to use and allows traders to build custom EA’s which use MetaTrader’s built in indicators. The tool is relatively easy to use, with traders simply adding in the indicators they want which are then combined to create a program which will place trades based on the users input. Out of the Expert Advisor builders I have used this is by far my favourite and will allow you to create relatively sophisticated EA’s without having to write any code yourself. As long as you have a good grasp of logical operators, building an Expert Advisor using this free tool should be a breeze.
Strategy Tune is a free visual Expert Advisor builder which allows you to create EA’s for the MetaTrader 4 platform. The Visual platform is meant to make building an Expert Advisor much easier, allowing you to build an EA by dropping various indicators and operators onto the interface of the free app. This is good as it allows you to see the logic behind the Expert Advisor and can help you build some quite sophisticated automated trading programs. I found the learning curve with Strategy Tune to be greater than with the other option mentioned in this article, though Strategy Tune has more flexibility and is superior should you want to build a sophisticated EA.
Paying A Programmer
There exist a number of companies and programmers who specialise in writing Expert Advisor’s for the MetaTrader platform. These programmers will write you a custom Expert Advisor based on your specification, allowing you to concentrate on working out a successful trading strategy, leaving the behind the scenes work to a developer who is fluent in the MetaQuotes language. The cost of such an option varies greatly and the quality of the final product many differ depending on the quality of the programmer hired. Before pursuing this option, traders should make sure they have worked out a successful trading strategy and properly research the programmer/company to complete their task.
MetaTrader 5 Review
MetaTrader 5 from MetaQuotes was launched in 2010 and was intended to eventually replace the older MetaTrader 4 platform. So far the platform has had a very limited uptake among brokerages and hasn’t quite been the commercial success that MetaQuotes envisaged. However a number of brokerages have begun offering the newer MetaTrader 5 platform and in this article we are going to take a look at how the platform compares with its predecessor and other competing platforms.
MetaTrader 5 comes with a new user interface after MetaQuotes made the decision to try and increase the platforms user friendliness. The user interface isn’t radically different and those who have used previous versions of the platform should feel right at home. MetaQuotes have made the decision to increase the size of the icons displayed above the charting area, in order to make it easier for users to find what they are looking for. The new design which focuses more on user friendliness has led to the charting area to become slightly smaller than in previous versions of the platform though it’s not something you really notice. The new MetaTrader 5 platform has an easier to navigate user interface, which should be a hit with those who haven’t used the MetaTrader platform before. The new easier to navigate interface should go down well with those who have used the MetaTrader platform in the past as it makes finding the tool you want to use significantly easier. Overall I welcome the changes made to the user interface with the only gripe being the smaller charting area, though this change is relatively minor and will go unnoticed by the majority of users.
Indicators and Charting Tools
The platform allows for users to add a wide range of indicators to charts with a couple of clicks. The MetaTrader 5 platform divides technical indicators up into four main categories; Trend Indicators, Oscillators, Volume Indicators and Indicators developed by Bill Williams. All of the indicators supported in MetaTrader 4 are again supported in MetaTrader 5, with the newer platform also boasting a number of new indicators. For instance traders can use an increased range of moving average indicators with MT5 supporting the Fractal Adaptive MA, the Adaptive MA, the Double and Triple Exponential Moving Averages, and the Variable Index Dynamic Average. A range of other indicators have also been added to the platform giving traders increased choice when it comes to using technical indicators to inform their trading.
In addition to the standard technical indicators available on the platform, traders can create their own custom indicators or alternatively download a huge range of custom indicators available freely online. The ability to create and download technical indicators allows traders to use indicators which aren’t already supported by the platform and has also led to traders producing some pretty unique and useful tools.
The platform features a range of different objects which can be added to the charts on the platform. The majority of these addable ‘objects’ are common charting tools including various Fibonacci and Gann angle studies. In this regard little has changed from MetaTrader 4 and those accustomed to the older platform will surely be pleased.
Auto-Trading and Advanced Features
As with previous versions of MetaTrader platform, traders are able to automatically trade the financial markets using programs known as Expert Advisors. However the platform doesn’t support Expert Advisors programmed in previous versions of the platform which is part of the reason why MetaTrader 5 hasn’t had a huge uptake among the trading community. Expert Advisors for MT5 are written in the MQL5 language which is more flexible and allows programmers to create more complicated Expert Advisors. This increased flexibility has come with increased complexity, with some programmers struggling with the move from MQL4 to MQL5.
Depth of Market functionality
With STP and ECN brokerages becoming increasingly popular, MetaTrader 5 has introduced some basic depth of market functionality. Previous versions of the platform provided no way for traders to see any information regarding the Depth of the Market, however all of this has changed with MT5 introducing a new Depth of Market tool. The tool allows for traders to see the Depth of Market and engage in one click trading using a depth of market ladder. While this added functionality will certainly appeal to some, cTrader still leads the field when it comes to depth of market functionality.
Charts are now available in an increased range of time frames with the platform now supporting a wider range of timeframes. Of course the all standard time frames are still available, with the new range of timeframes simply giving traders increased flexibility.
While MetaTrader 5 is certainly an improvement over the older MetaTrader 4 platform, there is not a massive amount of difference between the two platforms and those considering upgrading might quite reasonably decide it’s not worth it. The lack of backward compatibility with MetaTrader 4 will mean traders will have to convert custom indicators and EA’s into the new MQL5 language which is no easy task. The increased range of indicators, timeframes and depth of market functionality will certainly be attractive to a number of traders, but whether it will be enough to see traders drop the older MetaTrader 4 in favour of MT5 remains to be seen.
The MetaTrader 4 & 5 platforms from Russian software company MetaQuotes have come to dominate the retail Forex landscape, with the vast majority of retail FX brokerages offering the platform to their customers. Despite this the MetaTrader platforms have come under an increasing amount of competition with a number of other platforms starting to gain traction among traders.
This led some to speculate that the company may look to release a new incarnation of their Forex trading platform to further cement their position as the leading retail FX platform. No official announcements regarding MetaTrader 6 have been released by the software developer, but a MetaQuotes representative did make mention that the company would be releasing a sixth rendition of the platform at some-point in the future. Despite this, MetaTrader 6 is likely to be in the very early stages of development something which again seems to be confirmed from an interview posted on the Russian language Forex site Trade Like A Pro.
At the moment, the majority of the talk regarding MetaTrader 6 is pure speculation, with MetaQuotes having given very little away in regards to any specifics. It also seems likely that MetaTrader 6 platform is unlikely to be released for at least a couple of years. The brokerages MetaTrader 5 platform was only launched in 2010, and the uptake among brokerages still remains rather limited with many brokerages only offering customers the older MetaTrader 4 platform. It’s seems unlikely that MetaQuotes would launch a sixth version of their trading platform without first phasing out the older MetaTrader 4 platform. With so many brokerages relying heavily on the MetaTrader 4 platform and the vast array of bridging and plugin technologies available for the platform, it may be a while before it makes economic sense for MetaQoutes to part ways with MT4. It would also be unlikely that the software developer would want to support three versions of their trading platform simultaneously.