MetaTrader 4

MetaTrader 4The famous MetaTrader 4 (MT4) trading platform is used by a wide range of online brokers and their clients worldwide. Once you have learned how MT4 works, you can sign up with and try many different online brokers without having to accustom yourself to navigating a new trading platform, which is a big plus for many traders.

MetaTrader 4 is chiefly famous for its forex trading, but you can speculate on other asset types here as well. It is for instance possible to speculate on the movements of stock prices, commodities, futures, and cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin and Ripple). Contracts for Difference (CFD) are available which makes tailor-made speculation very easy and straightforward.


  • MetaTrader 4 works with Windows (Windows 7 and later), Mac and Linux. It is compatible with 32-bit and 64-bit processors.
  • If you don´t want to download and install MetaTrader 4, you can use it directly in your browser window. This is for instance a great option for traders using a Chromebook.
  • MetaTrader 4 mobile apps are available for Android and iOS. You find the MT4 APK in the Google Play Store, and the MT4 iOS app in the Apple App Store.


MetaTrader 4 was developed by MetaQuotes Software and released in 2002, but did not become widely used until the mid-2000s. Since then, the MT4 platform has been upgraded and revised many times to keep up with modern demands and preferences, but it has not lost that user-friendliness and special attention to detail that help make it such a success among traders online.

When MetaTrader 5 (MT5) was released in 2010, both MT4 and MT5 became available alongside each other. MT5 did not replace MT4; they are different trading platforms and each of them come with its own pros and cons.

Online brokers

Here are just a few examples of the many online brokers that are compatible with MT4:

  • IG
  • Admiral Markets
  • FXCM
  • FxPro
  • XTB
  • Trading 212
  • IC Markets
  • ZuluTrade
  • AvaTrade
  • 24option
  • Oanda
  • XM


Support for charting is available at the MT4 platform. To draw on a chart, select an object from the toolbar and click on the chart.


Nine standard time-frames are available:

  • M1 (1 minute)
  • M5 (5 minute)
  • M10 (10 minute)
  • M15 (15 minute)
  • M30 (30 minute)
  • H1 (1 hour)
  • H4 (4 hour)
  • D1 (1 day)
  • MN (1 month)

You can also create your own custom time-frames.

Technical indicators

There are 30 built-in indicators, but you can expand by downloading more indicators from MetaTrader´s Code Base and Market. Thousands of indicators are available this way.

MetaTrader 4 screen shot

Expert Advisors

The automated trading robots at MT4 are called Expert Advisors (EA:s). They can for instance be utilized to analyse FX price quotes and open and close positions based on algorithms.

Trading bots can be downloaded from MetaTrader´s Code Base or rented from the Market.

You are allowed to build your own robots and use on MT4. Integration is possible through Raspberry Pi 3 and Python.

Virtual hosting through MetaTrader 4 VPS permits traders to run trading bots around the clock.

Using third-party add-ons

A wide range of third-party developers have created add-ons that are compatible with the MT4 platform. There is for instance the popular Stealth Orders add-on, which gives a higher degree of privacy for trades.

If you can´t find a suitable add-on for your needs, use Java API to built one.

Using MT4 with play-money

Most online brokers that are compatible with MT4 will allow you to open a free play-money Demo Account to check out MT4 risk-free. You can also use a free play-money account to test-run your trading strategies and see how they pan out. Even with a play-money account (Demo Account), you will have access to historical data, indicators, copy trading and more, and Expert Advisors can be used with Demo Accounts.

MT4 support

If you encounter problems with MT4, a good place to start is the Help section, since a lot of common questions and issues are answered there.

If the Help section does not resolve the problem, go to the Contact Us page at the MT4 site and use it to get in touch with the MT4 support staff.

Another alternative is to contact your online broker, as some issues may pertain to the broker rather than the platform.

MetaTrader 4 vs MetaTrader 5

MetaTrader 4 (MT4) was released in 2002 and followed by MetaTrader 5 (MT5) in 2010. Both trading platforms are available alongside each other, and many brokers are compatible with both.

MT4 is chiefly famous for its forex trading, but do offer exposure to other asset types as well. When MT5 was developed, the aim was to create a better platform for multi-asset trading.

In most cases, beginners whose priority is forex should choose MT4. If you are into technical analysis, you may want to go with MT5 instead, and MT5 is also better for certain types of multi-asset trading.

Order executions

MT4 and MT5 uses similar order execution models, but MT4 only supports four pending order types while MT5 comes with six.

Multiple trading accounts

Both MT4 and MT5 are compatible with the MultiTerminal, which is used to manage multiple trading accounts.

Technical analysis

Both MT4 and MT5 offers resources and tools for Technical Analysis, but MT5 is a bit better. For instance, MT4 offers 30 technical indicators and MT5 offers 38, MT4 has 8 time-frames and MT5 has 21, and MT5 comes with more drawing tools – including a more advanced Elliot Wave tool.

Automated trading

Both MT4 and MT5 can be used for automated trading. For many traders, using MQL5 is easier than using MQL4. MQL5 follows a position system, while MQL4 utilizes an order system.