The rapid digitalization of the financial world has rendered the choice of trading platform as crucial as the actual trading strategy. Given the array of options, experienced traders may find themselves at a crossroads when selecting the right platform. MetaQuotes Software Corp, a world leader in this arena, offers two prominent platforms, MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5). This article is designed to help seasoned traders decipher which platform might suit their unique needs best.
Both platforms offer a host of features, from technical analysis tools to automated trading systems. However, there are key differences between them that traders need to consider.
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Customization and User Interface
Firstly, the user interface varies between the two platforms. MT4 has a simpler and more streamlined interface that’s often appreciated by traders who prefer a clean, clutter-free environment. It offers nine timeframes and allows experienced traders to create custom scripts using the MQL4 language.
On the other hand, MT5 provides a more detailed environment with a wider range of tools and indicators. It has 21 timeframes and a built-in economic calendar. The MQL5 language used in MT5 is more complex, enabling more sophisticated coding and programming for those who appreciate such capabilities.
Financial Instruments and Market Depth
The two platforms also differ in terms of the financial instruments they support. While MT4 specializes in forex trading, MetaTrader 5 extends to a broader set of instruments including stocks, futures, and commodities. This offers traders a diversified portfolio that aligns with an expanded trading strategy.
MT5 also offers a Level II Market Depth feature that is absent in MT4. This allows traders to see the full range of executable prices coming directly from liquidity providers. Traders gain access to better market data, a feature that can be invaluable to experienced traders.
Order Types and Execution
The two platforms’ order kinds and methods of execution are another significant area of contrast between them. Instant, Request, Market, and Exchange are the four different kinds of order execution that MT4 provides. It makes use of three distinct sorts of orders: Market, Pending, and Stop orders.
In the meantime, MetaTrader 5 provides its users with a selection of six distinct order execution methods, including Market, Instant, Request, Exchange, Stop, and Stop Limit. This platform also adds two new types of orders to the roster, which are not available in MT4: buy stop limit orders and sell stop limit orders.
Hedging and Netting
Hedging is allowed in both platforms but their approach varies. MT4 operates on a ‘First In, First Out’ basis, meaning traders can hold multiple positions in the same asset, and the order of execution depends on the time the order was placed.
MT5 initially allowed only netting – holding one position per symbol. However, following updates, it now also supports hedging. Yet, unlike MT4, the MT5 platform supports simultaneous use of both netting and hedging systems, providing another layer of flexibility.
The choice between MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 will largely depend on the individual trader’s needs and strategy. If you primarily focus on forex trading and value simplicity and user-friendly scripts, then MT4 could be your ideal choice. On the other hand, if you are looking to venture beyond forex, requiring detailed market data, and want to benefit from the extended features, MetaTrader 5 might be the superior option.
In the end, both platforms represent robust solutions for experienced traders, and either choice will provide access to a wide array of tools, strategies, and opportunities. Understanding the nuances between them will simply enable traders to further refine their approach and achieve their trading objectives more effectively.