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MetaTrader 4 Review

MetaTrader 4, also known as MT4, is an advanced trading platform that specializes in allowing users to create and automate complex trades. It also provides users with a wide range of market indicators to use when making their trades. It’s especially useful when it comes to foreign exchange (forex) trading, but can be used for a variety of different markets. MetaTrader is free to download and use. If you’re interested in learning more about the advanced data that’s available through MT4, consider speaking with a financial advisor.

MetaTrader has been around since 2005, and is an incredibly popular trading platform. It was founded by MetaQuotes, a software company. As its name suggests, it has multiple versions, with MetaTrader 4 being the most common. While Metatrader 5 came out in 2010, most users have stuck with MT4 instead. While it offers a wide range of features, it notably has no direct customer service.

MetaTrader 4 Overview
Pros – Can automate trades based on your preferences
– Free demo accounts available
Cons – No direct customer support
– Not great for high-frequency trading
Best For – Forex traders
– Experienced investors

MetaTrader 4: Fees

As mentioned above, a MetaTrader 4 demo account is free to download and use. Here, you’ll be able to test out the platform using virtual funds. However, launching a live account is a bit different. MetaTrader 4 makes money by selling software licenses to brokers whom users can partner with to open live accounts. So in order to open a live account, you’ll need to pick a brokerage and submit an application.

Once a brokerage accepts your application, they’ll send you a user ID and password so that you can start using the platform with your own money. The fee structure will thereafter depend on the brokerage you work with. They’ll determine the types of fees you’ll pay to use the platform, how much trades will cost and any other fees.

Keep in mind that MetaTrader 4 isn’t cheap for brokerages. Each license incurs an upfront fee of $100,000. Plus, each brokerage will need to pay thousands of dollars per month for other necessary services, like hosting, bridging and support. Brokerages may offer different features, so make sure you do your research before deciding on one.

MetaTrader 4: Services and Features

MetaTrader 4 Review

MetaTrader 4 is a comprehensive trading platform, and there isn’t too much it doesn’t do. While seasoned traders will have an easier time taking advantage of all the platform has to offer, beginners should have a relatively easy time navigating the platform’s interface as well. Plus, while users won’t have access to live customer service, they’ll be able to use a wide variety of educational resources and tutorials to help them understand the platform in its entirety.

One of MetaTrader 4’s most useful features is the ability for customers to automate their trades by programming custom indicators in MT4’s proprietary coding language. The platform can run in over 30 different languages and gives you the option to copy the activity of other successful traders. While MT4 is well-known for being a forex trading platform, it can also be used for trades within other markets, such as options and futures.

MetaTrader 4 doesn’t offer in-person financial advisors or robo-advisor services. However, depending on the brokerage you choose to partner with to use MT4, you may have access to additional features, such as live advisor support.

MetaTrader 4: Online and Mobile Experience

If you’re interested in using MetaTrader 4 on your desktop, you can download and run the software on any computer that runs of Mac OS, Windows or Linux. You can also use MT4 on your Apple or Android mobile device by downloading the MetaTrader 4 app. You should know that iOS devices need to be running iOS 9.0 or higher in order to run the software. Both the Apple and Android apps have higher than 4.5-star ratings on their respective app stores.

Both the app and desktop versions of the MetaTrader 4 software are relatively straightforward and easy to use. While it’s true that to take full advantage of some of the platform’s features you’ll need to work a bit, it’s still possible to use both relatively easily.

What’s the Catch?

MetaTrader 4 Review

MetaTrader 4 has most, if not all, of the bells and whistles that you’ll find on most other trading platforms. However, it’s not without its drawbacks. Firstly, a central complaint about MT4 is that trades don’t execute as fast as they do on some other platforms. If you need high-frequency trading and can’t afford to waste time, you may need to look elsewhere.

It’s also worth noting that while the interface is comprehensive, it can also be confusing to figure out how to take advantage of all features. This issue is compounded by the fact that you won’t have access to live customer support. Although the platform is free, you should make sure to partner with a brokerage that charges minimal fees.

How MetaTrader 4 Compares to Other Platforms

When it comes to features, MetaTrader 4 stacks up pretty well against the competition. In fact, it provides most of the industry’s standard features. In addition, it boasts unique things like automatic trades through its coding language. If you compare it to say, Robinhood, MetaTrader 4 has far more going for it.

It’s difficult to compare MetaTrader 4 to other platforms when it comes to price, however. Although it is itself free to download and install, using it for real requires the opening of an account with a brokerage that has a license. In turn, fees may vary significantly based on which firm you choose to work with.

Brokerage Comparison
Brokerage Firm Fees Minimum Best For
MetaTrader 4 Varies Varies – Day traders
– Anyone who wants to automate their trading processes
E-Trade $0 for stocks, options and ETFs $0 – Frequent traders
– Anyone who prefers strong customer service
Merrill Edge $0 for stocks, options and ETFs $0 – Bank of America account holders

Bottom Line

MetaTrader 4 is famous for its strong trading tools that appeal to expert investors. While it’s free to download, you can’t actually invest your own money unless you open an account with a brokerage that offers MT4. Its easy-to-use interface in conjunction with its programmable trading features makes it a strong choice for investors.

Investing Tips

  • If you prefer a more hands-off approach to investing, a financial advisor might be for you. Luckily, finding the right financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors in your area in just five minutes. Get started now.
  • Just like any other financial venture, investing requires you to plan out what you want to do. As a starting point, SmartAsset’s investment calculator can help you figure out what kinds of returns you need to reach your short- and long-term goals.

Photo credit: CMC Markets, metatrader4.com, mtrader.com

Sam Lipscomb, CEPF® Sam Lipscomb is a writer for SmartAsset. His work spans a wide variety of personal finance topics with expertise including retirement, investing and savings. He is particularly well versed in credit cards. Sam has been featured in The Economist and on The Points Guy. He is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF®). Sam graduated from Kenyon College with a degree in Economics and enjoys being a go-to resource for family and friends when it comes to personal finance. Originally from Washington, DC, Sam loves all things aviation and is a Cleveland sports fan. He currently lives in New York.
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