MT4 Basics

The chart window is the heart of the MT4 platform. To get started with MT4 you should understand how to generate and modify a chart window and how to use the Market Watch board.

You can find the most commonly used tools on the four toolbars.

On the Standard toolbar you will find tools to use in the MT4 working area:

standard-bar

The Charts toolbar contains tools to adjust the settings of your active chart window:

charts-bar

The Line Studies toolbar provides tools to add objects and text to your chart window:

line-studies

The Periodicity toolbar allows you to manage the timeframe of your chart:

periodicity-bar

Market watch

market-watch

The Market Watch board lets you monitor the real-time bid and ask prices for a range of instruments. The arrows before each instrument indicate whether the current price is higher or lower than the previously reported price. If the arrow is red the price is lower and if it is green the price is higher.

You can rearrange the list by dragging and dropping individual instruments.

Right-click on an instrument to bring up a menu with several options:

New Order: Open an order window for this instrument

Chart Window: Open a new chart window for this instrument

Tick Chart: Replace the list of instruments with a tick chart for the selected instrument

Hide: Remove the selected instrument from the Market Watch board

Hide All: Remove all instruments from the Market Watch board

Show All: Show all available instruments on the Market Watch board

Symbols: Open the Symbols window to select instruments to add to the Market Watch board

Sets: Save or load sets of instruments to display on the Market Watch board

High/Low: Expand the Market Watch board to include the high and low for each instrument

Time: Expand the Market Watch board to include the time the prices were quoted

Auto Arrange: Resize the columns of the Market Watch board

Grid: Add/remove lines between rows and columns on the Market Watch board

Chart window

chart-window

To open a chart window, chose one of the following methods:

  • Click any instrument on the Market Watch board and drag it to the main MT4 chart area
  • Click File, New Chart and select the instrument
  • Click Window, New Window and select the instrument
  • Click on the Standard toolbar and select the instrument

You can open up to 99 chart windows at any given time. Charts will update automatically with all new price data.

Charts toolbar

If the Charts toolbar is not visible, click View, Toolbars and select Charts.

Toolbar buttons will always correspond to the chart you currently have active. (Click on an individual chart to make it active.)

  • Chart style = bar chart
  • Chart style = candlestick chart
  • Chart style = line chart
  • Zoom in
  •  Zoom out
  • Auto Scroll (the chart will automatically scroll to the newest price when the chart updates)
  • Chart Shift (the latest price shifts to the ‘chart shift’ mark (i.e. grey triangle at top of frame)
  • Indicators (drop-down menu to apply technical indicators)
  • Periods (drop-down menu to set chart timeframe)
  • Templates (drop-down menu to load and save chart templates)

Other tools in the chart window

By right-clicking on any chart, you get a menu with further options to use your chart or customise its features.

  • To hide/display the gridlines, click Grid
  • To save the active chart window, click Save As Picture
  • To update your chart window, click Refresh
  • To print the active chart, click Print
  • To see how the chart will print, click Print Preview
  • To customise chart display features, click Properties
line-studies-toolbar

Line Studies toolbar

Cursor mode (default): click and drag objects on your chart

Crosshair mode: highlight coordinates on your chart with a crosshair

Add a vertical line to the chart

Add a horizontal line to the chart

Plot a diagonal trendline (click and hold to adjust)

Plot an equidistant channel i.e. two parallel lines (click and hold to adjust)

Plot six parallel lines at distances based on the Fibonacci series (click and hold to adjust)

Add a text comment, anchored to a point on the chart (you can specify colour, size and font)

Add a text label, fixed to the chart window (you can specify colour, size and font)

Add one of eight icons to your chart – select from the drop-down menu

add-eight-icons-dropdown

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