Which Forex Trading Software Should I Use?
Which Forex Trading Software Should I Use?
Most professional activities require a set of tools and equipment, and forex trading is no exception to this. It is also a fact that the cost of the equipment in any profession increases the more complex you want it to be. However, when compared to most other jobs in the world (you should consider trading a “job”), the equipment required in order to trade forex is relatively inexpensive.
There are lots of different options available when it comes to forex trading software. They range from simple charting tools suitable for beginners, to more advanced solutions for fundamental and technical analysis, financial news and order placement.
Trading software prices
Forex trading software also range in price from free, to mid-range, and lastly there are some very expensive solutions like the Bloomberg trading terminal, which is only used by institutions and very large traders. For the purposes of this article, we will therefore look more closely at two popular free and mid-range solutions:
TradingView is mainly a forex charting software tool that is now becoming extremely popular among forex traders. TradingView lets traders create trading ideas based on technical analysis, visualize them directly on charts, and publish them for the TradingView community to see.
Many forex traders claim that TradingView is simply the best forex trading software and charting tool available online today. One great benefit is that it is simple enough for beginners to learn, while still being powerful enough for even the most advanced traders.
TradingView is available for free to start with, although once you learn to like this software you will likely benefit from an upgrade to one of the paid subscriptions. Although TradingView has recently moved some features that used to be available in their basic package, into the more expensive packages, it is still a reasonably priced product.
The pricing for TradingView is as follows (for month-to-month subscriptions):
- PRO: US$14.95/month
- PRO+: US$29.95/month
- PREMIUM: US$59.95/month
Unlike TradingView, which runs in your browser, the MetaTrader software can be downloaded for free from the company’s website. Developed by Russian company MetaQuotes Software for retail traders in forex, futures, and CFD’s, MetaTrader has become the most popular forex trading software out there among retail forex traders.
The thing about MetaTrader that most forex traders like is the ability to look up Expert Advisors, or trading robots, to copy-trade. In addition to this, the software also offer extensive opportunities for traders interested in coding their own Expert Advisors or even technical indicators, for their own use or to sell to other traders on the built-in marketplace.
It is important for beginners in the forex market to be aware of the limitations of these trading robots. Many of them simply do not live up to their promises. Trading robots and trading algorithms are often optimized to perform very well on historical data, but with no relevance to future performance. Systematic forex traders often refer to this as “curve-fitting” or “over-optimization.”
Rather than delivering solid and steady future returns, trading robots are often designed and marketed to sell well and generate sales profits for the developer. The best way to approach forex trading is therefore to do your own homework and learn trading through proper forex trading education.
MetaTrader offers perhaps a more advanced feel to it than TradingView, and it definitely takes some more time for beginners to get used to. However, the opportunities found in the Expert Advisor library in the platform are simply too good to be ignored, since this forex charting software has such a huge user base world wide.
MetaTrader4 works just as well as a day trading software as it does for longer-term forex traders. It is a versatile solution that has been a favorite in the online forex trading community since it was introduced in 2005. In fact, many online brokers offer MetaTrader as the only trading software for their clients to use, as experience shows that this is the most popular platform in the community anyway.
TradingView or MetaTrader – which is the best forex trading software?
If you are choosing between MetaTrader and TradingView as your forex trading software, you may find that they can both be useful and complement each other in your trading. You may for example choose to use TradingView for your technical analysis and as a social network to stay in touch with other traders, while still using MetaTrader to actually place your trades in the market.
Several forex traders who were previously hardcore proponents of MetaTrader have recently switched over to TradingView for their technical analysis. One obvious benefit of using TradingView for your technical analysis is that it is a cloud-based trading software, meaning you can access your saved forex chart layouts from any device. Also, even though your computer crashes and you have to get a new one, all your hard work is still safely backed up on TradingView’s own servers, unlike what the case is for MetaTrader.
What equipment is necessary to trade forex?
The technical requirements of your computer will vary depending on the type of forex trading software you choose to go with. Forex trading software and forex charting software solutions for download often require a Windows-based computer, whereas cloud-based trading software like TradingView and others only require a computer with a good internet connection and a web browser. As in most other industries, the general trend in the forex trading community is a move to more cloud-based solutions.
In addition to good trading software, serious traders need to have a fast and reliable internet connection and an office where they are able to focus fully on trading without distractions. Enough screen space to keep an eye on all relevant information without constantly switching between windows on your computer is also a benefit. Most traders prefer to work with at least two monitors to make their job easier, but there are also some traders who claim that a laptop is all they need.
Many forex brokers will also offer their own web-based forex trading platforms to their clients, in addition to the more advanced MetaTrader platform. As a beginner, you may find it easier to start with the web-based version, and then move on to MetaTrader or other more advanced platforms once you have gained more confidence in your trading. This way, the learning curve is kept manageable and you can focus on learning one new thing at a time, which is what will eventually lead you to success in the forex market.