MetaTrader 4 (MT4) has been the 'standard' online platform for trading Forex ever since it was released in 2005. Later on, more and more products have been added so that today on LCG MT4 customers can trade the full range of financial instruments, from Forex to commodities and indices.
As it can be seen in the screenshot below, the user interface is friendly and intuitive. At the top there is the Main Menu, where all commands and functions of the platform are collected. It has seven sub-menus (File - charts related commands, managing profiles, View - select interface language, manage windows and toolbars, Insert - contains the objects that can be imposed on charts, from technical indicators to lines and text, Charts - commands used to customize the charts, such as the type of bars used, timeframe, grid presence, Tools - contains MetaEditor, used to create and edit experts, custom indicators and scripts, and general settings of the client terminal, Window - lists the open charts and offers several modes of displaying them, Help - detailed user guide and information about the program).
Below the Main Menu there are four customizable toolbars: Standard - contains general commands managing the terminal, Charts - all commands involving charts and technical indicators are grouped here, Line Studies - mostly a duplication of the Insert menu, Timeframes - a switcher between chart periods (from 1 minute to monthly).
On the left we have the Market Watch window where all underlying instruments offered for trading are listed. Below, the Navigator window, where accounts, expert advisors (EAs), indicators and scripts can be accessed. At the bottom of the screen lies the Terminal - a multifunctional window where traders can open, close or modify trades, manage positions, see news, alerts, account history and logs of the program and of expert advisors. It also contains the Status bar, which offers information about the server connection and the amount of incoming and outgoing traffic.
There are two different types of orders in LCG MT4: market (instant execution) and pending. You can either go to the Tools menu and click on New Order or right click an instrument in Market Watch window and select the same command. A screen like the one below will pop up. You can now make sure the order will be in the instrument desired, choose the volume of the trade, set stop loss and take profit levels and then click to Buy or Sell as desired.
To create a watch list of your favourite instruments, just right click in the Market Watch window and select Hide All. Only the instruments with charts open will remain. Now you can individually choose the products you want to keep an eye on from the Symbols list.
It's very easy to customize your charts in MT4. In order to do that, just right click on an active chart and select Properties. From here you can customize it as you wish, for instance changing the background or the colour of candlesticks. There are also three default colour schemes you can choose from.
To sum up: MT4 is an user-friendly online trading platform suitable for both new and experienced traders. The traders in the first category will love its simplicity and full customization features, while traders in the latter category will appreciate its complex functionalities particularly regarding algorithmic trading. All traders will notice that unlike many other platforms, MT4 is relatively low on resources, reacting fast and with minimal system disruptions.
Note: Spread betting and CFD trading carry a high level of risk to your capital and can result in losses that exceed your initial deposit. They may not be suitable for everyone, so please ensure that you fully understand the risks involved.
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