This tutorial is all about metaTrader 4 platform. There are many other trading platforms thats technical traders use to trade the financial market, trading platforms like ActTrader, Currenex, MetaTrader5, Mirror trader, Tradeo, ZuluTrade, FXSTAT, just to name a few. Out of all trading platforms, metaTrader 4 is the most used trading platform so I decided to write this tutorial to help new traders master this famous trading platform.
I will go into greater detail about each one of the topics below:
- how to change templates on MetaTrader 4
- How to add trading indicators on mt4
- What is a trailing stop and how to use a trailing stop
- Types of orders and how to use them
- How to calculate pips on MetaTrader 4
Before we get started let me quickly explain what metaTrader 4 is and why it is the most used and recommended trading platform.
MetaTrader 4 is the most used trading platform among financial traders. with a lot of different indicators and the best part is that you can also add your own indicators.
MetaTrader 4 or MT4 is a popular trading platform used by tons of traders and financial brokers worldwide. This trading platform is developed by MetaQuotes Software for online trading in the financial market. There are 2 main versions of MetaTrader: MetaTrader 4, and MetaTrader 5. Both of these platforms are created by the same company which is MetaQuotes software.
MetaTrader 5 has more features than MT4. However, MetaTrader 4 is more popular than MT5 and it’s because MT5 is complex whilst MT4 is user-friendly and it is a perfect trading platform specially for the novice traders.
MetaTrader 4 features
It creates detailed reports from the positions you take, you can customize charts, check your balance, Check your profit or loss, Read financial news, It has 9 time-frames, from one minute to monthly time-frame, You can receive and read e-mails, You can open the price charts and follow the markets price fluctuations and analyze the charts, You can plot trendlines on your charts, analyze the charts and locate the trade setups.You can choose from line charts, bar charts, and candlestick. While the best forex trading platform comes with it’s own trading indicator of like Bollinger bands, MACD, stochastic oscillator, and whole lot more indicators, you can also add your own trading indicators if you like.You can place orders and set stop loss and target. You can set trailing stop loss and pending orders, You can easily download several years of historical data for each currency pair, CFD and… You can use this feature to back-test your trading strategies.
How to download MetaTrader 4
In order for you to start using MT4 platform, you must first download it and then install it on your computer, tablet or phone. You can install it for free direct from the MetaTrader website or through online forex brokers.
If you are serious about becoming a retail trader, you must first master your MT4 platform or any trading platform if you choose to use a different platform.
How to calculate number of pips on metatrader 4
Here, we look at two ways to calculate the number of pips on metatrader4 or mt4 platform. I will show you two methods to calculate the number of pips, One requires you to use crosshair tool, and the other requires you to use mouse wheel or scroll wheel.
Before I show you how to calculate the number of pips on your mt4, let me quickly explain what is a pip in case you you have no idea what I am talking about.
What is a pip
A pip or percentage in point, in forex terms is the smallest price change in currency pair. For example, if the EUR/USD moves from 1. 12080 to 1. 12085, that would be a change of 5 pips. Most of the currency pairs are quoted out to 4 decimal places. pips are used to calculate profit and loss.
It is very important to know how to calculate pips because every position you take it has everything to do with pips. When you take a position you need to know how much you’re going to risk in terms of pips, how many pips from your entry level to the level you want to set the stop loss or take profit. How much is your risk/reward ratio, etc…
This is how you can calculate the pips between two points on the price chart of the MT4 platform:
How to calculate pips using crosshair.
All you have to do is to click on it and the mouse crosshair cursor will appear on your screen: a line that connects the two points will be drawn.
Once the crosshair is on, move the crosshair cursor to the price chart where you want to start counting, left click and hold your mouse and drag the cursor to the other point while you are still holding the mouse left button when the cursor reaches the other platform
You will see three numbers at the right side of the cursor as you keep moving your mouse. The information shown in this line will be:
The first number is the number of the candlesticks or bars that are placed between the two points,
the second number is the number of pips between two points ( you have to divide it by 10 to have it in pips if currency pairs prices have 5 decimals on your platform).
The third number shows the price of the level the crosshair cursor is.
If you find this process to be a little time consuming then there is also other way you can use to calculate the number of pips:
How to calculate number of pips using Mouse scroll wheel.
To use this tool, you have to press the mouse wheel to turn on the crosshair cursor.
If your mouse doesn’t support this feature. The best way is to press Ctrl+f, the Crosshair tool will be activated.
How to change templates on MetaTrader 4 platform
– Open a new chart and make sure it’s clean by clicking (CTRL + B) to remove all indicates.
– right click on the chart and select properties Or simple click F8
– select “colors” and change the colors to your favourite colors.
If you would like to set your temple to look exactly like mine, follow the instructions below:
- Change the background color to lightGray
- Change both bar up and down color to black.
- bull color to lime.
- And change bear color to red.
Once you’re done setting up the colors, you might also want to change few things on common tab,
Chart autoscroll Is on by default. This causes the chart to scroll back to the end on every incoming tick, and it’s annoying so you might want to unmark it.
- Grid is also on by default, if you like me, then you might also want to unmark it to keep you charts clean and click “OK”.
- Once you done, right click again on your chart and select template
- Select save template.You will have to name your template
- Enter a name for the templates (name it whatever you want) and save it.
Once you done, you can open another price chart while you want to have the same colors and indicators with the same settings on it. To do that, right click on each of the newly opened charts then click on “Template” and then click on the name of the template you just saved. The template will be applied to the chart. Follow the save process each time you open a new chart. However, this can take a lot of your time. So here is a simple trick that helps you have the same template applied, each time you open a new chart without having to apply the saved template on each price chart one by one:
When you save the template, you can name it “Default”. If you do that, any new chart that you open will use the same template automatically.
How to add trading indicators
STEP BY STEP
Firstly, you must download the indicator that you want to install on MetaTrader 4 platform So I am going to use the spread indicator as an example.
This spread indicator becomes very useful when you want to see what is the current spread on currency pair before placing a trade because the spreads on some currency pairs can be huge depending on your broker and market conditions. So it’s important you to know how much you pay your broker each time you place a trader. Especially if you’re a scalper or fundamental trader.
Spreads also increase during major forex news announcements and it’s good to have this indicator on your chart so you can see how wide the spread are during those times should you decide to trade news.
Step by step
1. Click on the link below to download the spread indicator.
2. Copy the indicator and log in the mt4 platform.
3. Click on “File” menu at the top left of your MT4 platform.
4. Click on “Open Data Folder”.
5. Open the “MQL4” folder.
6. Open the “Indicators” folder.
7. paste the indicator to “Indicators” folder.
8. Restart the MT4 platform.
9. Click “Indicators” button in Metatrader toolbar
10. Select “Custom”
11. Adjust settings if you want to change the default settings or press OK to add the indicator to your selected chart
And you are done…Next time you want to add another indicator, following the same steps.
How to use a trailing stop
I personally don’t use trailing stop loss, but maybe you are interested in it because of the different trading strategies you use, especially if you like trading major news events or you just want to know what is a trailing stop loss and how it works. This tutorial will teach you that.
Using a trailing stop loss on your positions can helps you to manage your positions and take care of your profit automatically.
What Is Trailing Stop Loss?
Trailing stop loss is a feature that is found on your MT4 trading platform or other trading platforms.
When you set it on an open position, it moves your stop loss further when the price moves toward the target automatically.
When price moves in your favor by the amount of pips that you set, your stop loss will automatically move to break even. From there, when price moves in your favor, your stop loss moves by the same amount.
For example,You set a custom trailing stop value of 100 points ( 10 pips trailing stop). If price moves in your favor by 10 pips, your stop loss will moved to break even. If price continues to move in your favor, your stop loss will also continue to trail behind price by 10 pips. This will continue until your take profit target is hit.
However, if the price reverse for more than 10 pips, your trailing stop loss will be hit and you will be out of that position this is because trailing stop can only move in one direction. This is how the trailing stop loss locks your profit.
How to Set a Trailing Stop Loss on MT4 step by step.
Note:Looking at the picture above, you will notice that is says “points” instead of “pips” this might be confusing if you don’t know the difference between pips and points so here IS a short explanation:
Each point is worth 1/10th of a pip: 1 pip equal to 10 point, 2 pips equal 20 points, etc…
STEP 3: Select your desired amount of trailing stop pips from the preset menu, or select “Custom” to enter a custom number.
Step 4: Click on the “OK” button and you are done. Remember to leave your platform and computer on.
Trailing stop relies on your trading platform being open. It’s not handled by your broker’s server like a regular stop loss that works even if you close your platform or switch off your computer.
Note* IF you turn off your computer or close your MT4 platform, the trailing stop loss will not work anymore, and the stop loss will not be moved.
Also, If you don’t set any stop loss for your position, but you set a trailing stop loss, then the trailing stop loss will set a stop loss at breakeven, as soon as it is the time for the trailing stop loss to move the stop loss to breakeven. That’s all you need to know about a trailing stop loss.
Types of orders
Now we look at the four types of orders found on MT4 trading platform. These orders can be confusing, especially to novice traders.
If you’re serious about becoming a forex trader you must first learn how to use your trading platform to avoid making unnecessary mistakes.
The following two orders are used in the financial market and you must understand them.
1. Market order
2. Pending order
Market order is a commitment to the brokerage company to buy or sell a currencies at the current price. Execution of this order results in opening of a trade position.
market order is a buy or a sell order that is executed immediately at the current price. For example , if audusd current price is 0.7050 and you press the “sell by market” button, your order would then be instantly executed immediately at that level. The opposite is also true, if want to buy audusd at 0.7050 you would then press the ” buy by market” button as shown above.
Pending order is the client’s commitment to the brokerage company to buy or sell a currency pair at a pre-defined price in the future. This type of orders is used for opening of a trade position provided the future quotes reach the pre-defined level.
How to place a pending order
Under pending orders there are 4 types of orders namely; Buy limit, Sell limit, Buy stop, and Sell stop.
A buy limit is a pending order placed above the market price. For example, audusd is currently trading at 0.7050 and you want to buy it once it reaches 0.7010.
You can either choose to sit in front on you screen and monitor your chart or price until it reaches the 0.7010 level then use “buy by market” option or if you have other things to do or you don’t like monitoring your charts, you can set a buy limit order at 0.7010 then walk away from your screen and let me market do it’s job. If price move down and hit that 0.5010 level, your pending order will automatically be executed.
A sell limit is a pending order placed bellow the market price. For example, audusd is currently trading at 0.7050 and you want to sell it once it reaches 0.7060.
You can either choose to sit in front on you screen and monitor your chart until it reaches the 0.7060 level then use “sell by market” option or you can simply place a buy limit order at 0.7060, If price move up and hit the 0.7060 level, your pending order will be executed automatically.
A buy stop order is a pending order place above the market price in the anticipated that the price will move up, hit your pending order to activate it and continue to move upward after hitting your buy stop order.
For example, audusd is currently trading at 0.7050 and is heading upward. If you think price will continue to move up till 0.7060 level and still continue to move up 0.7060, you would then set a buy stop order at 0.7060 if you don’t want to baby sit your charts.
If price move up to 0.7060 level, your pending buy stop order will be activated automatically.
A sell stop order is a pending order placed below the market price in the anticipated that the price will move downward, hit your pending order to activate it and continue to move in the same direction after after hitting your buy stop order.
For example, audusd is currently trading at 0.7050 and is heading down . If you think price will fall to 0.7040 level and still continue to fall after hitting 0.7040, you would then set a sell stop order at 0.7040.
If price move from 0.7050 level to 0.7040 your pending sell stop order will be activated automatically . Simple as that.
There you go: types of orders found on MT4 platform.
Whenever you’re are stuck or need help, don’t hesitate asking questions. Also, don’t forget to share with your friends and family
I like to know who is reading my tutorials so hit me up in the comment section! I seriously love hearing from you guys. If you have a question about a tutorial please leave a comment there. Suggestions for future tutorials are definitely welcome otherwise, enjoy your trading journey and I hope you learn a ton! Don’t forget to share with your friends.