ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Personal Finance»
  • Investing in Stocks, Bonds, Real Estate, More

Forex platforms | The best in forex trading

Updated on May 1, 2011

During my forex trading career I have been able to distinguish two forex platforms that surpassed all my needs and expectations as far as currency trading and market analysis is concerned. I have been trading for five years already and having tried many forex trading platforms, I still cannot find anything that excels the two – Metatrader and Oanda platforms. Let's take a closer look at these intruments.

Metatrader forex trading platform

The company that created and developed the Metatrader brokerage trading software is called Metaquotes Company. The software itself was created in 2002 with the purpose of providing brokerage services relating to forex, CFD and futures market. The trading platform was programmed from the core with its own programming language, meaning it has no other trading platform background.

Features of the Metatrader forex platform

1. Independence of the broker.
As it was designed and programmed by an independent software company, the software sales or usage rights do not belong to any forex broker. Instead, forex brokers can use it in their brokerage and trading business and adapt it to their own needs and the needs of their customers. Most of them already do it and the big advantage is that the traders do not need to adapt and learn a new trading software – since most brokers use the same Metatrader forex trading platform. They can integrate different trading tools and packages into the Metatrader forex platforms, but the back end or the core is developed and maintained by the Metaquotes Software company.

2. Charts.
Forex pair charts or trading graphs are many to choose from, starting from USD/CHF and ending with Gold, Stocks and futures. The charts can be adapted to the needs of a trader starting from the background color to the latest historical data upload.
The zoom function is really helpful if you are into detailed analysis of a few candle bars.
Trading right from the chart is another feature which makes trading a one click process. Well, maybe two clicks, but you get the idea. Besides, you can make chart templates.

3. Technical analysis features.
The selection of forex indicators (lines, channels, Gann and Fibonacci analysis tools, volumes, candlesticks, Equidistant channels and much more) is huge. Every technical indicator then can be customized to a particular trader needs.

4. News and quotes.
The forex platform has a separate news feed field, which is quite fast during the news releases. Not many forex platforms have this feature, so you don’t have to search for another news source in the internet.

5. Automated trading – or Expert Advisors are one of the most unique elements making these forex platforms even more attractive to professional traders.
Expert Advisor software is designed specifically for Metatrader platform to perform automated trading according to the parameters set by a trader itself or just advice which trades to make. Expert Advisor software can deploy every piece of information found on a forex trading platform; it’s up to a trader to decide which forex indicators to use. With this in mind, it becomes quite easy to implement your trading strategy using this tool and creating yourself a forex trading robot. The programming language of expert advisors is called Metaquotes Language 4; it also comes with Meta Editor (Expert Advisors editing) and Strategy Tester (the module to test Expert Advisors).

6. Mobile trading.
The trades in Metatrader platform can be managed from a cell phone, smart phone or PDA – pocket PC. If you happen to be without your desktop or laptop computer – you still can trade using your smart phone. One disadvantage is that a simple cell phone like Nokia 6210, for example, (wap enabled) enables you only to check your account status without the possibility to manage trades and accounts.

7. Multi language support.
The platform supports almost 30 different languages, you can enable your native language (if it is supported) in just a few clicks and the menus will appear in your preferred language.

8. Application program interface (API) – enables integration of the Metatrader forex platforms to any other trading system.

What I did not like was that you still have to install this platform on your computer; it does not work through a web browser.
The other thing was it will not work on Mac OS. It is designed to work in Windows application and that really messed things up, when I started using Mac operational system. However, I found out that by installing additional software, (crossover) you can run virtual windows settings where you will be able to install and work with Metatrader.

Oanda forex trading platform

Oanda Corporation is a financial services provider specializing in spot forex trading. It is one of the largest futures commission merchant and a member of National Futures Association. The corporation started providing online trading in 1996 and since then the platform has become one of the most popular currency trading tool in the world.
Why is it so attractive?

Oanda forex platform features

1. Easy to use.
The high - end forex platform is designed for forex newbies and if you are completely new in a forex investment business, it will really make things simple. As every other forex broker, Oanda provides the possibility to trade in demo account, called FX Game.

2. Small starting capital.
Yes you can start trading with as little as 1 dollar, of course the leverage is not very big though – 1/50 is not much, having in mind that most brokers offer 1/200. Anyway, it’s a good choice for those who wish to start live with super mini accounts and escape trading in forex demo account.

3. Small spreads.
When the spread for, say, EUR/USD is only 0.7 pips - it’s very tempting. The trading spreads in Oanda are the smallest I have been able to find amongst other forex brokers. Very convenient for scalpers, who enter big number of trades every day.

4. No installation needed.
What you need is just a web browser and java application updates to be able to run the latest version of Java based platform. It runs smoothly in Windows as well as Mac OS.

5. Excellent customer support.
If you have some troubles trading with this forex platform or any transaction errors, the customer service will always be excellent and fitting your needs. You can start asking questions right away in the Oanda website live help window and the answers usually arrive fast.

6. Several sub accounts in one platform.
This is particularly useful if you use more than one forex trading strategy or selling and buying the same currency pair at the same time. This way you could, for instance, buy EUR/USD in your main account and sell it concurrently in a number two sub account. Sub accounts are easy to create and maintain.

7. Ability to manage (and watch) trades in your mobile phone, which is not even a smart phone or PDA.

However there are some cons to consider here:
Poor indicator customization and charting options leave no choice, but to look for better analysis providing forex platforms.
Wide spreads appear during the weekends and the news releases which is rather inconvenient for news traders.
The java based Oanda trading platform crashes more frequently than traders might expect.

 Overall I would suggest using one of these two forex platforms; Metatrader – for experienced, professional trader and Oanda for beginners working with Mac OS systems or having just a cell phone in their hands :)

© 2010 Tomygun


Submit a Comment

  • chamilj profile image

    chamilj 6 years ago from Sri Lanka

    I never used Oanda should give try with a Demo. Thanks for the information.

  • Tomygun profile image

    Tomygun 6 years ago from Vilnius

    I also like Metatrader most. However, Oanda has now integrated one interesting feature - they show the past and future news release schedule right on your trading chart - it's quite convenient for news traders. You can also easily disable the function.

  • gajanis786 profile image

    gajanis786 6 years ago

    Nice comparison of two far as I am concerned, I have found MT4 the best.Thanks.

  • FOREX NINJA profile image

    FOREX NINJA 7 years ago

    Some times prices moves at different speed in different platforms. i know i have two account with both Alpari and FXCM stock brokers but may i know which platform is best encouraged

  • esterleny profile image

    Mohamed Farid 7 years ago from Alexandria, Egypt

    Great Hub Tommy, thanks for the informative hub, i hope i could get my hub to such level

  • balthasarcontent profile image

    balthasarcontent 7 years ago from San Diego, CA, USA

    Great review of two great platforms; I do all my charting in MT4, and my demo testing in Oanda.