Apart from all the standard manuals, there are certain MT4 tricks to increase your trading performance.
Despite the launch of MetaTrader 5 and a bunch of other trading platforms out there, many traders still prefer to use MetaTrader 4. The platform is so popular mainly due to its high versatility and customization, making it an attractive solution to traders with various trading styles. The options are practically unlimited, and most of them are completely free. On top of that, nearly all brokers offer MT4 in their service, so it is very accessible to traders all around the world.
While the industry-standard platform is known to be simple and beginner-friendly, there are several ways to improve your experience with MT4. Here are some tips and tricks that may help you in your trading and research.
Chart customization is one of the biggest strengths of MT4. On this platform, you can easily customize your charts by adding or removing indicators, grids, and period separators as you like.
Here are some useful keyboard shortcuts that you can use for easy removals:
- Grid: CTRL G
- Period separators: CTRL Y
- Close charts: CTRL F4
Hiding the Bid Line
If you are a technical trader, the bid line can be rather obtrusive at times. Thankfully, you can hide it from the chart simply by setting the color of the line to "None". This trick also applies to other components on the charts as well. You can customize the color of the background, candle bars, line graphs, and more.
Save Your Charts as Templates
Once you found a chart setting that you like, you can save it as a template and set it as the default chart, so the setting will be automatically applied the next time you open the platform. The quickest way to do this is by right-clicking on the chart and choosing "Template". Then click "Save Template".
You can create as many templates as you like to fit all of your trading strategies. If you want to set a specific template as your default, you simply need to right-click on the chart, click "Template", click "Save As", and choose "Default".
The toolbar section can be pretty distracting and there's a low chance that you're going to use all of the features at once. This is why MT4 allows you to add or remove as many features as you want. This way, you can keep your charts much cleaner and more effective.
Generally, there are four separate toolbars shown on the platform:
- Chart studies
- Line studies
- Time frames
You can easily move each of the toolbars around by dragging them to wherever you'd want them to be on the screen. If you want to add or remove features, simply right-click on the toolbar and click on the customize sub-menu. You'll see a list of all of the features available. You can remove features that you don't need by un-ticking them.
Handy Keyboard Shortcuts
MT4 comes with a bunch of keyboard shortcuts that are incredibly useful to perform different tasks. Once you're familiar with these shortcuts, you can save plenty of time in the long run and increase your charting space.
Here are some shortcuts to easily access different features of the platform:
- CTRL T: to open Terminal, which is the main window you use for trading.
- CTRL N: to open Navigator, which is where you add indicators, Expert Advisors, and log in.
- CTRL M: to open Market Watch, which is where you view available instruments.
- CTRL D: to open Data Window, which is where you view all data for the product currently in the chart window.
The following are shortcuts to help you improve the speed of your trading:
- ' ' (plus): zoom in the chart
- '-' (minus): zoom out the chart
- CTRL F: crosshair
- CTRL Drag: copy objects
- Alt Drag: extend objects
- Alt T: one-click trading
- Hotkeys: user-defined shortcuts
Use the following shortcuts to change the visual aspects of your charts:
- F8: edit chart graphics
- F9: open the new order panel
- F11: enable/disable full screen
- Alt 1: bar charts
- Alt 2: candlestick charts
- Alt 3: line charts
Aside from the default shortcuts, you can add customized hotkeys to a specific indicator. This can be useful to prevent losing your current analysis on your charts after you switch chart templates. Instead of changing templates, you can just leave your price charts open and change the indicators that you use using the hotkeys.
To assign a hotkey to place a specific indicator on the chart, simply right-click on the indicator on the Navigator window and click "Set Hotkey".
Favorites Indicators List
To quickly access your preferred indicators, you can create a favorites list. In order to do so, just do the following steps:
- Open Navigator (CTRL N).
- Open the relevant tab (indicators scripts, etc).
- Hover your mouse over the desired item.
- Right-click on your mouse.
- Click "Add to Favourites".
Last but not least, MT4 offers an alert feature that allows you to stay ahead of the charts even when you're away. If you're trading in multiple markets, it's easy to lose track of the markets, especially when they're moving in different directions.
By activating the alerts, you will be notified when important price levels are reached. To set up the alerts, simply move your mouse to the area of the chart that you'd like to set the alert at, right-click on the location, then click "Trading" and then "Alert".
If you are an MT4 user, this guide will help you navigate through the platform more effectively, which hopefully leads to better trading outcomes in the future. While having a solid trading plan is crucial, trading platforms also play a huge part in your success. So, take your time to explore your platform and don't forget to use the tricks above to improve your experience.
MT4 is not only known for its easy use but also for a wide range of management tools that help traders minimize their risks. Find out further in MT4 Vs cTrader, Who is Better in Risk Management?