Metatrader 4 for Beginner Traders

MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is the go-to tool for conquering the Forex market, whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned pro. MT4 is a round-the-clock ticket to the global markets. You can trade anytime, anywhere.

The platform is packed with charts, indicators, and tools to help you trade better. It also allows customized Expert Advisors (EAs) that can trade while you sleep.

In short, it’s a Forex trader’s best friend. Let’s look at how MetaTrader 4 works and review best practices for using the platform.

MetaTrader 4
Photographer: Piotr Swat

What Is MetaTrader 4?

When it comes to conquering the fast-paced and ever-changing Forex market, MetaTrader 4 stands head and shoulders above the rest. It’s the most popular platform for Forex trading, and millions of traders use it every day. Here’s why:

  • Access to Forex and CFD Markets: With MT4, you can either try a demo account or jump straight into Forex and Contract for Difference (CFD) markets.
  • User-Friendly Interface: MT4 is easy to follow, even if you’re a beginner.
  • Advanced Trading Tools: Sophisticated charting tools, multiple time frames, and several technical indicators help you accurately plot entry and exit points.
  • Automate Your Trading Strategies: You can utilize its pre-existing EAs or add custom EAs.
  • Real-Time Alerts: Stay informed about market movements, news, and key events.
  • Demo Mode: Sharpen your trading edge without risking your hard-earned cash in a market simulation.

MetaTrader 4 has been around since 2005. Yet it remains more popular than its upgrade, MetaTrader 5 (MT5), which came out in 2010. MT4 is generally considered easier to use and has almost the same features. It’s also the perfect platform for beginners, whereas MetaTrader 5 is better suited for experienced trailers because of its more advanced tools.

A major drawback, however, is that MT4 doesn’t have direct customer service.

How Does MT4 Work, and How Do You Use It?

In this quick guide, we’ll walk through how to install and use MetaTrader 4 on both desktop and mobile.

Step 1: Download and Installation

First, you need MT4 on your device. It’s available for Windows, Mac, and mobile platforms.

Visit the official MetaQuotes website to download the installation file. Run the installer, then follow the on-screen instructions to start using MT4 on your desktop.

To download on mobile, visit the iOS or Google Play store.

Pro Tip: Always download MetaTrader 4 from trusted sources to ensure you’re getting genuine software.

Step 2: Logging In

When you launch MT4, you’ll see a login window. If you’re using a demo mode, then you can create your own login. But for live trading, you’ll have to connect through a broker.

You can only trade real money with a broker. MT4 is the medium that lets you place orders, which are executed by the broker.

Step 3: Navigating the Platform

The MetaTrader 4 desktop version might seem like a maze at first, but it’s quite intuitive:

  • Market Watch: On the left, you’ll find a list of available instruments. You can right-click to add or remove instruments.
  • Chart Window: This is the main area where you’ll spend most of your time. Open a chart by right-clicking on a symbol in the Market Watch and selecting “Chart Window.”
  • Terminal: At the bottom, you’ll find your trading account details, history, alerts, and more.
  • Toolbars: The top and side toolbars offer quick access to functions such as drawing tools and time frames.

MetaTrader 4 mobile is even easier to use. It has six navigation buttons at the bottom: Quotes, Trade, Chart, History, News, and Messages.

Step 4: Charting and Analysis

Now, let’s dive into the heart of MT4: charting and analysis. First, select a trading instrument (currency pair, commodity, etc.) from the Market Watch. Double-click or drag the instrument to view its candlestick chart. MT4 also gives you different drawing tools to plot your analysis.

Analyze price movements with various technical indicators and drawing tools. For instance, you can add moving averages, Bollinger Bands, or trend lines to spot trends. In addition, MT4 has 30 built-in technical indicators to help you analyze a trade.

Pro Tip: Experiment with different indicators and chart patterns to refine your trading strategy.

Step 5: Placing Your First Trade

Once you’ve analyzed the market, it’s time to place your first trade on the desktop app.

  • Right-click on the chart and select “Trading” or use the “New Order” button in the toolbar.
  • Choose your lot size and add stop-loss and take-profit levels to manage risk.
  • Confirm the trade, and you’re in the game.

To place a trade in the MetaTrader 4 mobile app, go to the Trade Window and select the currency from the top right. Then follow the same steps to add your lot size and stop-loss and take-profit levels. Click on “Buy” or “Sell” to place your first trade. Keep a close eye on your trades and don’t hesitate to adjust your stop-loss or take-profit levels if market conditions change.

Take note: most traders usually practice for several months on a demo account before trading with real money.

MetaTrader 4 for desktop
Photographer: Fadhli Adnan

Using MetaTrader 4: Best Practices and Strategies

To unlock your success with MetaTrader 4, follow these best practices and strategies:

  • Practice, Practice, Practice: Before risking your hard-earned money, leverage the demo accounts. You can practice trading and test your strategies risk-free. Familiarize yourself with MT4’s features, experiment with different instruments, and refine your approach. Even after going live, many traders use their demo accounts to test new Forex trading strategies or tweak existing ones.
  • Master Technical Analysis: MT4 is a treasure chest of technical analysis tools. Dive into charts and indicators to spot trends, patterns, and market signals. Analyze, learn, and make informed decisions. And if you can’t find an indicator that fits your strategy, you can create your own in MQL4.
  • Leverage Expert Advisors: Use EAs for a hands-free approach. You can set predefined rules and conditions, and they’ll trigger the trade as soon as the condition is met. Be sure to test your EA in the demo account.
  • Manage Risk Efficiently: Don’t underestimate the importance of risk management. Before entering any trade, calculate your potential losses and set stop-loss orders to limit them. In addition, determine your position size based on your risk tolerance. This keeps you from wiping out your account in a single bad trade.
  • Practice Emotional Control: Trading can be emotional, especially when you see red numbers on your screen. So, set a clear trading plan and stick to it to avoid impulsive decisions. Emotions can lead to hasty, regrettable choices.

Remember, success takes time, practice, and discipline. Trading is a long game, and you need to be patient. But with time and discipline, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a savvy trader.

Trade on MetaTrader 4 With The Funded Trader

MetaTrader 4 is the ideal platform for beginning traders. Its user-friendly and intuitive interface gives you access to a variety of markets. You can even automate your trades or try a demo account first. But ultimately, your success with MT4 will depend on your trading strategy.

The Funded Trader can help you refine your strategy, while also giving you access to a supportive community of traders. Get started today with one of our trading Challenges.

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