South Africa has the most active trading community on the continent. Even before the pandemic, it had the largest volumes of daily operations. Terminals designed by MetaQuotes Software allow simple access to the biggest financial markets in the world. Today, the economy is struggling to recover, and opportunities for remote money-making are vital. Both versions of the system are popular, but which one is best for your needs? Here is an overview of MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 today.
What Is MetaTrader?
The most popular system for online trading is your one-stop shop for analysis and trading action. The versions were released five years apart: MT4 appeared in 2005 and MT5 in 2010. Today, these platforms co-exist, and they are offered by numerous brokers in many countries. MetaTrader is the generic choice.
The software connects you to real markets: you may buy and sell stocks, derivatives, currencies, metals, and other profitable instruments. Each version is a convenient dashboard. It helps users at every step from preliminary market analysis to execution to withdrawals.
Both terminals are popular with traders of all levels. They have a similar interface, but the newer version is more advanced. Generally, either platform will provide you with the following:
- a broad selection of instruments across markets, from currencies to derivatives;
- a wide range of visuals for analysis (tables, line graphs, bar charts, etc.);
- different modes of execution, including instant;
- streaming quotes in the live mode;
- compatibility with the different desktop and mobile devices;
- financial news for fundamental traders;
- audio alerts.
In terms of assets, MT5 has more options. As long as you stick to currencies, commodities, indices, and CFDs, you may be perfectly happy with its predecessor. The 5th edition has futures and stocks, which are absent in MT4. As a result, some users switch to the advanced platform when they need to diversify their portfolios further.
As both programs were developed by the same studio, the transition is relatively easy. The layout and controls are similar. Importantly, both systems are equipped with triggers for risk management — Take Profit and Stop Loss.
Global brokers like Forextime provide both versions of MT alongside their proprietary software. They are free to download and explore with a demo account. There aren’t any subscription charges, either. Brokers only profit from commissions or spreads.
Different Types of Analysis
Market analysts are divided into two groups — fundamental and technical traders. All the systems facilitate both modes of research. Users may combine them to make more accurate decisions. Here is what the tools include.
A technical trader can foresee likely developments based on price charts. Both versions of the platform come with multiple visuals and adjustable time frames. These are suitable for short-term and long-term strategies. Users can identify typical patterns to spot the best entry and exit points.
Meanwhile, a fundamental trader will consider updates from financial media. For example, in the currency market, rates are in constant motion because of political and economic events. Changes in interest rates, unemployment statistics, trade deficits, imports and exports, GDP, etc., affect the pricing.
MT4 includes access to the latest news. The other version adds an economic calendar to the arsenal: this special feature condenses the most consequential announcements. This makes it slightly more attractive for fundamental traders, as they have more sources of data.
Support of Multiple Devices
Like any popular software, the MetaTrader family is fully optimised for mobile use. Each version is available in three forms. First, you may install a desktop terminal on your laptop or PC. Both Windows and Mac are supported. Secondly, there are sleek mobile apps for Android and iOS. Finally, trading is possible without downloads. The web-based version works directly inside browsers.
This broad compatibility is not the only advantage. All versions of MT4 and MT5 connect to the same cloud-based servers, and they share data instantly. It means switching between devices is a breeze. You may analyse the market at a glance via your smartphone, open a position from your tablet, and execute it from a PC. Traders do not miss lucrative opportunities because their platforms are always at hand.
The Demo Mode
Demo trading is a must for any beginner. Both terminals can work as market simulators. Enter the login and password from your broker, and the system will imitate typical market conditions without any capital required. You can practice as long as necessary. There aren’t any charges or time constraints.
Advanced Features of MT5
The key strength of MT5 is the richness of its analytical graphics. There are more technical indicators, so the platform supports more strategies. Here are the main distinctions:
- 21 timeframes vs 9 in MT4;
- 38 embedded technical indicators vs 30 in MT4;
- 44 graphic objects vs 31 in MT4;
- 6 types of pending orders vs 4 in MT4;
- Exchange execution (unique);
- Depth of market (unique);
- Netting (unique).
Different Programming Languages
The first system is built on a simpler programming language; MQL4 requires multiple functions for a single operation. The successor is order-based. Each request is performed via one function. In addition, users can add and change scripts.
So, Is MT5 Better?
Usually, newer versions of the software are better, but this is not the case. The systems cater to different audiences. MT5 has superior graphics and wider functionality, but its advanced features are not needed by everyone. For example, someone trading minor currency pairs will find all the necessary tools in MT4. Beginners do not need sophisticated analytics for stocks, either.
Undeniably, MetaTrader 5 is geared towards seasoned investors with diverse portfolios. It supports more instruments, including shares and futures. Meanwhile, novices study trends, Forex trading strategies and indicators in the relative simplicity of MT4. It allows them to develop the necessary foresight and skills, including risk management.
To conclude, each system has its loyal audience, so define your needs. If you have little experience with online trading, MT5 may look confusing. Begin with the earlier version, develop your financial acumen, and grow your portfolio. When you are ready for stocks and futures, make the switch.