Best trading tools for Currency trading
The world of trading has changed dramatically over the past few decades, with individual traders doing business predominantly online, and most enlisting a variety of FX tools to help them achieve success.
In the past, a trader or an investor would speculate on the markets via a broker. They would call their broker with a request to buy or sell a certain asset, or their broker might call them with a market tip. In these times, the tools available to traders and investors were few and far between.
Today, trading and investing have changed dramatically. While most active traders still trade via a broker, who will give them access to a range of markets and trading software, they are making their trades independently, and using forex tools can both boost their productivity and improve their trading performance.
In this article, we'll give you an in-depth overview of some of the best Forex trading tools available, for both new and professional trades.
So what do these tools include? Just some of the Forex trading tools you'll find online include:
- FX tools for finding trading opportunities
- Tools for taking the market's pulse
- Tools to calculate your FX profit and loss
- Forex tools for more efficient trading
- FX trading strategy tools
How to find trading opportunities
Our top FX tools for finding trading opportunities are Forex calendars, trading news feeds, technical analysis tools and idea-generation tools. All of these can tell you about what is shaking the market, meaning more trading opportunities for you.
Forex calendars: Economic calendars, news calendars, corporate calendars and more
Forex calendars are a valuable tool for learning about what is going to happen in the market, and planning your trades accordingly.
They largely target traders who want to keep up with the fundamental updates on the FX market. However, these calendars may come in handy to all types of traders.
Admiral Markets' free Forex calendar lists upcoming fundamental events, and releases of economic news, listed along with their previous and expected values. As soon as the news is released (sometimes, with a slight delay), the calendar is updated with proper values, and the market starts to experience new moves.
Source: Admiral Markets Forex Calendar
An even more in-depth calendar tool is the free Admiral Markets Premium Analytics economic and corporate calendars. The economic calendar shares detailed, real-time information about upcoming economic event, while the corporate calendar covers corporate dividends, earnings, annual meetings and more.
Source: Admiral Markets Premium Analytics portal, economic calendars
With these investing calendars, traders can follow their favourite companies and always have access to the latest insights about changes that might influence their stock trading.
Source: Admiral Markets Premium Analytics portal, economic calendars
Curious to see it in action? Register FREE for Premium Analytics using the banner below:
Live FX news: Trading news, live market news, Forex news feeds and more
Along with economic calendars, live news is another useful Forex trading tool. The problem is that there's just so much information to sift through! While you can manually search Bloomberg, Reuters, Forex Factory and FX street, wouldn't it be easier if it was all delivered to you automatically?
The good news is that this is possible. In fact, the Admiral Markets MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin includes a feature called Admiral Connect, which delivers live trading news direct to your MetaTrader terminal!
Admiral Connect tool connects all big news providers, including a trade analysis feature and your own RSS-feeds to display in-platform and spend less time outside the terminal when looking for additional functionality and information required for trading.
Source: Admiral Connect, MetaTrader 4. Learn more and install the Connect tool here
Or, if you'd like even more data, our exclusive Premium Analytics portal offers traders access to real-time Forex and trading news feeds, with the option to filter based on trading instruments or the latest live news.
While the portal is available absolutely free, there is a perk if you have a live trading account with Admiral Markets - over 850 news stories a day. Meanwhile traders with demo accounts will get access to up to 200 free news stories.
Source: Admiral Markets Premium Analytics portal, live FX newsfeeds
Technical analysis for Forex trading
Many traders see the appeal of technical analysis, as it allows them to identify FX trading opportunities without having to keep up to date with market news. The main challenge, though, is identifying accurate patterns that generate reliable trading signals.
The good news is that there are many FX trading tools available that do the work for you.
The first one we'll cover is in the Technical Analysis and Trading Signals feature in Admiral Markets' Premium Analytics portal. Powered by Trading Central's award-winning technology, this widget combines actionable technical analysis on virtually every financial instrument (including stocks and Forex) to help investors optimise their trading strategies.
Source: Admiral Markets Premium Analytics portal, Technical Insight
These technical analysis tools incorporate independent opinions of Trading Central's global research team, provide automated and personalised trade ideas and combine technical and fundamental analysis to help generate trading signals for active traders.
The second feature, also powered by Trading Central, is available in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin.
Technical Insight™ in an FX tool that combines detailed, proactive analytics, educational guidance, and customisable options to empower traders of all skill levels to take control of their investments.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Technical Insight
Traders can also continue to learn about any instrument through the "Learn more" and "View Historical Events" buttons. This progressive disclosure of information informs new traders on how to approach the jumping off point and begin trading, and supports their ability to continue learning at their own pace.
The Technical Summary Score removes the need to wade through extraneous details to form a decision. It enables traders to see a concise technical outlook across three timeframes in an instant!
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Technical Insight
Using a proprietary weight-of-evidence approach, the Score displays the directional outlook of either bullish, bearish or neutral, across short- to long-term timeframes, to provide simple and concise support at the moment it's needed.
Forex Featured Trading Ideas trading tool
The final FX tool we'd like to cover in this category of tools for finding trading opportunities is Featured Ideas™ - another Trading Central tool available in MetaTrader Supreme Edition.
With thousands of financial markets, news events and technical signals to keep track of, it's impossible for any trader to monitor all market movements for the best trading opportunities. This is where Featured Ideas™ can help.
Featured Ideas delivers unbiased, intraday trading ideas tailored to each individual trader's preferences such as holding timeframes, favourite patterns, or preferred currencies.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Featured Ideas
Featured Ideas' transparent and informational feature set helps teach new traders about technical analysis, and assists traders of all skill-levels in crafting confident, timely decisions and strategies.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Featured Ideas
Each idea offers clear and concise commentary on the reasons why this idea was displayed, and what the technical events mean for price movement. Hovering over the pattern will teach you about that technical patterns, and "watching" an idea will allow you to keep track of how it performs so you can make a confident, educated decision next time you see that pattern.
Ready to start testing some of these tools on the live market? The good news is that you can start trading Forex today, just by clicking the banner below!
Feeling the market's pulse
The next category of Forex trading tools is those that tell you what's happening in the market right now - who is trading what, how they feel about it, and the relationships between different instruments and markets.
FX market heat map: An at-a-glance view of market movements
While news and calendars are essential tools for identifying trading opportunities, sometimes they can be difficult to interpret. You might expect there to be movement after the European Central Bank's next announcement, but will your preferred trading instruments go up or down?
The problem is that while every trading platform and finance site includes charts, but not every site or platform leads with its ability to provide a true picture of the market.
This is where a market heat map can be useful. Market heat maps empower traders to discover moments of extreme undervaluations and overvaluations by giving them a visual breakdown of the market's biggest movers and shakers, as well as the directions in which they're moving. This means you have an at-a-glance view of exactly what's happening in the market, and you can trade accordingly.
Source: Admiral Markets Market Heat Map. See today's heat map here
FX market sentiment: Who's long, and who's short?
The market heat map tells you how much an instrument has moved, but it doesn't tell you how traders feel about those movements. This is where market sentiment tools are helpful.
Market sentiment tools tell you how the market feels about certain instruments - they might tally up the volume of long trades or short trades, or they might scan the current headlines to see how the media feels about an instrument.
The first market sentiment tool is the free market sentiment widget on the Admiral Markets website. It helps you to understand the current positions of traders, aggregated into one dashboard. This way, you can see how many traders are holding short positions, and how many are holding long positions. With the help of Market Sentiment, you can double-check whether you want to join the trade, plus what your chances are if you decide to go against the crowd.
Source: Admiral Markets Market Sentiment
The next FX tool is available in the free MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin - the Sentiment Trader tool. Like the widget on the Admiral Markets website, this gives you the net short and long positions in an instrument, with the convenience of it being accessible from within the MetaTrader platform
Source: Sentiment Trader - EURUSD. Charts for financial instruments in this article are for illustrative purposes and does not constitute trading advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any financial instrument provided by Admiral Markets (CFDs, ETFs, Shares). Past performance is not necessarily an indication of future performance.
To use the Sentiment Trader tool, you will need to:
- Download and install MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5 on your computer
- Download and install the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin (available free to anyone with a live or demo Admiral Markets account)
- Open MetaTrader 4 or 5
- In the Navigator window, expand the 'Expert Advisors' menu
- Select 'Admiral - Sentiment Trader' and drag it on to an active chart
- Hit OK
The Sentiment Trader tool will then appear in your trading platform.
Source: Admiral Markets MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Navigator window
The third market sentiment tool is the Forex sentiment widget in our Premium Analytics portal, powered by Acuity. This widget uses unique machine learning technology to reveal hidden insights from the text of millions of news articles, presenting it in a visually compelling and intuitive display.
Source: Admiral Markets Premium Analytics portal, Research Terminal
Forex Correlation Matrix: See which currencies correlate
Classic technical charting - oversold, overbought, resistance, or breakout level for an instrument - is no longer enough for the modern trader. Online traders also need to consider more unique approaches to identifying seasonal price patterns.
So what is correlation in currency trading? It is the relationship of price changes in one currency to another. For example, the Swiss Franc is usually positively correlated with the Euro, meaning their values move in similar directions. For this reason, the USD/CHF has a negative or inverse correlation with the EUR/USD most of the time.
A correlation matrix is an FX tool that provides invaluable and in-depth market information across all asset classes in different time frames. This enables traders to mitigate the risk involved when planning trades, or to spot trading opportunities when strong historical correlations are broken.
With the free correlation matrix available in MetaTrader Supreme Edition, you can preview the correlations of trading instruments plotted over various time frames. The process for downloading and using this tool is the same as the process for the MTSE market sentiment widget.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition Correlation Matrix. Learn more and install Correlation Matrix here.
Forex calculators: how to calculate your trading profits and losses
A good trading strategy includes planning for profits and losses. This allows traders to make calculated risks - by calculating the maximum potential loss they are willing to accept in a trade, they can decide whether the potential profit is worth the risk.
The challenge is that calculating Forex profits and losses isn't simply subtracting the opening price of your trade from the closing price of your trade. You also need to consider trade volume (lots), applicable leverage, your account currency, and spreads, swaps and commissions charged by the broker.
The good news is that there are a range of free trading calculators available online, which include all these variables and more. You can see how it works today with our free Forex calculator.
Source: Admiral Markets Forex calculator. Use the calculator here
FX widgets for more efficient trading
Now you've identified your trading opportunities, you've gauged market sentiment and you've calculated your potential profits and losses.
The next step is trading. Whether you're a scalper, day trader or swing trader, time is money, and you want your trading to be as efficient as possible. This will free you up to conduct further analysis or make more trades, or might simply mean you can get away from your computer more often to enjoy the other parts of your life.
The good news is that there are a range of Forex tools designed to make your trading experience as smooth as possible.
But first, if you'd like instant access to some of the best free Forex tools on the market, including the market sentiment widget, real-time news, 16+ indicators and advanced trading features, take a look at MetaTrader Supreme Edition - available FREE for both MetaTrader 4 and 5!
MTSE is the ultimate trading toolkit for professional traders - simply click the banner below to download it today.
Manage multiple trades with the Trade Terminal
The Trade Terminal is another feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin, and it allows traders to keep an eye on multiple assets simultaneously.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Trade Terminal
Trade Terminal also features a Mini Terminal, which enhances the default 1-click-trading manager that comes with MetaTrader 4 and 5. Instead of just being able to purchase and sell currencies with one click, this tool lets you preset stop-losses and take-profits, making it an essential tool for short-term traders.
Get instant FX analysis with mini charts
One of the challenges of most trading platforms is that it's difficult to see the same instrument in multiple time frames and formats. Either you need to manually change the time frame and chart type for your chart, or you need to open multiple charts for the same instrument and move between them.
Mini charts, however, give you instrument analysis over different time frames within any chart window. This allows traders to better see the direction of the market and help them make better forecasts of what might happen in the future.
Varied small charts inside a main chart and even access to multiple timeframes like 3 minutes or seconds and chart types like Point-and-Figure, Kagi or Range, are not available in the standard versions of the trading platforms.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, mini charts
Boost trade efficiency with one-click FX trading
If you're a scalper or high-frequency trader, you know how quickly the markets can move. You also know how important it is to make trades as quickly as possible to avoid potentially losing out on profits due to fast price movements.
Fortunately, MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 both offer the option of one-click trading, which, once enabled, allows you to open trades in an instant.
The MetaTrader Supreme Edition mini terminal feature also supports this, with advanced features such as margin calculator, a 'reverse' button to immediately close a trade and open the same position in the opposite direction, a 'panic' button to close all positions with a single click and a 'hedging/non-hedging' option.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, mini terminal. Learn more about the mini terminal here.
Advanced order types for FX trading
Market orders leave you at the mercy of the markets and larger traders because you have no control over the price you'll get.
The best way around this is using advanced order types to ensure your Forex trades are executed the way you want. The good news is that MetaTrader Supreme Edition allows for many advanced order types, such as one-cancels-the-other (OCO) orders.
Advanced order templates, including OCO breakout and OCO reversion., or groups of pending orders, allowing traders to quickly execute the saved template in the future with a predefined strategy for the enter price, S/L, and T/P.
Just consider OCO orders, which can be very useful for traders looking into breakouts, or trading on major news releases. Employing an order of this type, the trader sets two price levels at which orders will be executed.
Once the first order is filled, the second one is cancelled automatically. Imagine the current EUR/USD currency pair rate was 1.10010, and the NFP was about to be released. The trader cannot predict the result, yet they might believe that the price should move at least 50 pips, and the movement direction depends entirely on whether the results are above or below the expected forecasts.
The trader may set an OCO order at 1.0015 Long, and at 1.0005 Short. This way, once the prices begin to move, the order will be quickly executed, no matter what direction the trend moves in. This is no doubt one of the most useful FX tools for traders who prefer to trade news releases. Apart from this, Trading Terminal comes with a number of other exciting features, such as setting your stop-losses and take-profits in US Dollars, and much more.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition order templates. Learn more and install Order Templates here
As for the exit, top traders predefine their own set of rules for partial, total or multiple closing an open position based on profitability or price.
With an Automated Close form, you choose the threshold when this rule is applied. Like to partial close a percent of original volume when profit or loss rich a certain level and in the same type to modify S/L and T/P or to run a Trailing Stop. Call it, the best simple feature to increase your profit potential.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition Automated Close. Learn more and install Automated Close here
Forex trading strategy
The final set of FX tools to consider is tools that will help you build and test your trading strategy. Below we will cover the best technical analysis and software for Forex traders.
Tools for identifying FX trends
So what tools do day traders use, you might ask? We've all heard the saying, "the trend is your friend." By being able to identify trends, Forex traders can ride price changes in a single direction, or predict when the trend is likely to break. In any case, identifying trends is a valuable tool for making smart trading decisions.
And, in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition Mini Terminal, there is an FX tool to help you do just that: Smart Lines. Smart Lines is a tool that takes advantage of trend, price and timelines.
This high-end technical analysis feature allows online traders to convert any trend and channel line, horizontal and vertical line into a stop loss, take profit or trailing stop. Partial closing (% or lot size) is possible also, for a more diversified handy management of trades.
Source: MetaTrader Supreme Edition, Smart Lines
Learn more about and install Smart Lines here.
Forex trading simulators: Backtest your FX strategies
For online traders, backtesting is one of the most important aspects of developing a trading system. Backtesting is when you test your trading strategies using historical data, which can indicate their potential level of success should you try the same strategy on the live market.
The good news is that you can do this in MetaTrader Supreme Edition! Our next FX tool is Trading Simulator, which is one of the best free trading softwares on the market. It simulates manual trades using historical data. The simulator will run the trade, and then report on the results you would have achieved had you traded using the parameters you put into the tool. Traders can use it for both currencies and for stocks.
MetaTrader Supreme Edition trading simulator. Learn more about and install the trading simulator here.
Advanced FX trading indicators
Our final Forex trading tool is using indicators. Forex indicators give you a raft of useful information to help you make more successful trades. These include identifying levels of volatility, whether the market is trending or ranging, whether an instrument is overbought or oversold, as well as triggers for entering and exiting trades.
While most online trading platforms will come with a handful of built-in indicators, there are a range of additional indicators on the market that can help you get even more from your trading. Some of these indicator packages are available for a fee, and can be bought from forums and the MQL marketplace, while some brokers will offer their clients advanced indicator packages free of charge.
At Admiral Markets, our MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin includes a package of 16 new indicators.
You might have noticed we've been referring to MetaTrader Supreme Edition quite a bit. This is simply because it's the ultimate one-stop-shop for advanced trading tools, with over 56 additional features available for both MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5.
However, before you can use MTSE you will need a trading platform, so why not download MT5 below, absolutely free?
How you can access these 20 FX tools FREE
As you can see, there are a wide range of Forex tools available to help supercharge your trading, and the best part is that many of them are available absolutely free!
Here's a summary of the tools covered in this article, and exactly where you can find them:
- Admiral Connect feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- Premium Analytics portal with news feeds from Dow Jones
- Admiral Connect feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin - click on the 'Technical Insight' button
- Premium Analytics portal Technical Insight feature. This is one of the best indicators that day traders can use.
Forex trading ideas:
- Admiral Connect feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin - click on the 'Featured Ideas' button
Market heat map:
- Online market sentiment widget
- Market Sentiment feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- Premium Analytics portal Research Terminal feature
- Correlation Matrix feature in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
Efficient trading FX tools:
- Trade Terminal in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- Mini Charts in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- One-click trading in MetaTrader 4 and 5
- Advanced order types in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
FX strategy tools:
- Smart Lines in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- Trading Simulator in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
- Advanced indicator package in the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin
Forex Tools: A Summary
This wraps up our review of the most popular Forex tools to maximise your trading experience. If you're ready to start testing out these tools on the markets, why not open a live account?
If you're not quite ready to make the leap to the live markets, you can opt to trade with a free demo account with Admiral Markets. Our demo account enables you to trade on any device with a virtual account balance of EUR10,000 with live market data, real-time news, analysis, and more!
It's the best option for beginner traders to learn how to trade and practice, or for advanced traders to test out their new strategies before they apply them to the live markets. Start trading risk free today by clicking the banner below!
About Admiral Markets
Admiral Markets is a multi-award winning, globally regulated Forex and CFD broker, offering trading on over 8,000 financial instruments via the world's most popular trading platforms: MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Start trading today!
This material does not contain and should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. Please note that such trading analysis is not a reliable indicator for any current or future performance, as circumstances may change over time. Before making any investment decisions, you should seek advice from independent financial advisors to ensure you understand the risks.