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NO15 - How to choose a Forex Trading Platform

"A good forex trading platform is essential to your success as a trader. You are only limited by the functionality that is available from the forex trading platform. Not many traders pay a lot of attention to the forex trading platform when they start trading, but this is something very important. A good forex broker and a good forex trading platform is one of the foundations that you should have. Consider things like having a good connection, speed of execution are some of the things that matter to you as a trader. In this article, we point you to some of the things that you should consider when you are choosing a forex trading platform. We also list out the major forex trading platforms (both free and paid) that are currently available. It is quite possible that you will end up trading on one of these forex trading platforms. By the end of this article, you will know what things to bear in mind when looking for a trading platform."

A forex trading platform is the connection between you as a trader and the markets. As a crucial bridge for trading, having the right forex trading platform is important. At the beginning, it might be difficult to understand what features you need.

Traders often keep hopping from one trading platform to another. But the question remains which forex trading platform is best for you. Remember that there are only so many forex trading platforms that you can choose from.

This makes the task of choosing a forex trading platform a bit easier compared to choosing a forex broker. In summary, the following are the most commonly used forex trading platforms.

  • MT4 by Metaquotes (free)
  • MT5 by Metaquotes (free)
  • cTrader by Spotware (free)
  • Ninjatrader (data fee applies)
  • Multicharts (subscription + data fee where applicable)

Depending on the type of a forex trading platform you choose, it can range from free of cost to paying monthly software fees. Given the fact that most forex traders are small traders, the popularity of free forex trading platforms often tops the list of the forex trading platforms.

Before you go ahead and download one of them, here are the five things you should look for when choosing a forex trading platform.


1. Cost and fees

The first thing to look at is of course how much the platform costs. As mentioned earlier, depending on the forex broker you trade with and the instruments and of course the data, you will have to end up choosing a trading platform that requires additional fees.

But for the most part, many retail forex brokers offer the standard MT4 or the MT5 trading platform and it could also include the cTrader trading platform from Spotware. All these three trading platforms are free to use and thus do not eat into any additional costs for you as a trader.


2. Charting capabilities

Because you will be trading forex and chances are that you will initially start off with day trading, it is important that your forex trading platform has adequate charting capabilities. These include the ability to have a large number of indicators that come by default and drawing tools that will help you in your technical analysis.

A good forex trading platform always has a charting and a trading platform built in. In other words, this is also known as trading directly from the charts. The more choice of indicators and drawing tools you have, the better the chances of you to do a thorough analysis.

Charting capabilities also includes the ability to switch between timeframes with the flexibility to create your own custom time frames as well.


3. Ability to use expert advisors for automated trading

At some point or another, you might want to use an expert advisor or an algo for trading. It is best to check if the trading platforms have these features already. It is also advisable that the forex trading platform that you choose allows you to automatically test these strategies to gauge their performance.

This also means the ability to import and export the expert advisors or the algorithms that you will use in your automated trading platform.


4. Developer environment

Having access to a developer environment is ideal if you want to code some strategies or develop custom indicators. A forex trading platform should have this in built feature so it is easier for you to code and use the custom indicators or algorithms directly without any further conversions to the files.


5. Compatibility and accessibility

You should also check if your forex trading platform is compatible with your operating system. Typically, most forex trading platforms are designed to work on a Windows based operating system.

If you are using a Mac or a Linux based computer, you need to check if there are any native versions of the trading platform that is available. While a Mac or a Linux environment allows you to emulate the windows platform, a native version of the forex trading platform is always better.

Accessibility is another feature to look into. Now a days with the ability to do a lot more with your smartphone, you should check if your forex trading platform is available on different versions.

A good forex trading platform allows you to access and trade on the trading platform from your mobile app or from the browser. Therefore, having these extra options will not tie you down to your computer or a laptop.

As you can see from the above, traders should pay attention to their forex platform. This is one of things to consider when you are choosing a forex broker as well.

Read 668 times Last modified on Sunday, 12 May 2019 07:18

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