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How to manage charts in MetaTrader 4?

September 20, 2019
by Nick Alexander, Market Analyst

Article Recap

Learn how to use MetaTrader 4 charts with Eightcap’s step-by-step guide

Charts are an essential tool for a trader, learn how to manage charts in MetaTrader 4 in order to make the most out of your trading experience. A vast pool of information can be accessed through price charts. It’s up to the traders to decide what information and data they use to develop their trading strategy. Read our step-by-step tutorial in managing charts in MT4. Also, try our free demo trading account and gain exposure to over 200 financial instruments with virtual funds.

Introduction to Managing Charts in MT4

With so much market data available, it is important to be able to interpret it correctly. Well-designed and readable charts in MetaTrader 4 will help the trader to react faster to any future market opportunities. If you are using MetaTrader 5, please read our MT5 article.

This MetaTrader 4 step-by-step tutorial will help you to:

  • Open and arrange new charts;
  • Change chart types and timeframes;
  • Scale and shift MT4 charts;
  • Add and remove indicators;
  • Customize the trading charts;
  • Use Chart templates and profiles;
  • Export chart data.

How to open a new chart

If you have no charts open in your MetaTrader 4 when you first launch the platform, go to “File” and click “New Chart.

Screenshot of the MT4 with the 'File' menu opened and cursor on the 'New Chart' option

A new menu will open with the most popular currency pairs listed at the top and the rest of the instruments available grouped by asset type. Select the one you need.

Screenshot showing how to choose a Forex pair for a new chart on MT4

You can maximise the chart or keep it in a smaller window.

Arrange charts

You can easily close and manage charts as regular windows. Remember to have the chart highlighted while you are working on it by simply clicking on it.

Screenshot of the MT4 program with 2 chart windows

You can open multiple charts and switch between them from the tabs below the chart or arrange them as tiles. To do that you can use the “Tile” button in the toolbar above the chart or by right-clicking on the chart tabs, where you can easily switch between the different views.

A screenshot showing how to arrange chart windows in tiles on MetaTrader4

How to shift and adjust MT4 charts

If the price is sticking closely to the end of the chart, you can click the “Shift” button to shift the end of the chart away from the right border. You can adjust the distance from the border with the small gray error at the top of the table.

Right in front of the “Shift”, there’s a “Scroll” button that moves the chart to the latest bars automatically, so they are always displayed on the screen.

A MetaTrader 4 screenshot with cursor on the 'Shift end of the chart from the right border' option

To make sure that all Charts buttons are visible in the toolbar go to the “View” menu, select “Toolbars” and make sure “Charts” is ticked.

A screenshot of the MT4's 'View' menu with an active 'Toolbars' submenu

If you want to make any changes to the chart just right-click to open the context menu. There you can remove or add a grid or volumes to the chart. You can also zoom in and out from there.

Screenshot showing how to turn on the 'Volumes' view on MetaTrader 4

Chart types in MetaTrader 4

From the buttons on the Chart toolbar, you can also zoom in and out or change the way, in which the data is displayed: as a line chart, candlestick chart or a bar chart.

Screenshot of the MetaTrader 4 program for Windows with Candlesticks chart turned on

Additionally, charts can be zoomed very precisely by defining their borders. This is done through the “Properties” window of the context chart menu.

A screenshot of the Eightcap's MetaTrader 4 platform explaining how to open the properties window of a chart

Scale options for MT4 charts

You can select the “Scale fix” or “Scale fix One to One” option. Click “OK” to save.

A screenshot of the Eightcap's MetaTrader 4 platform with a chart properties window

Chart properties

Scrolling left and right through the chart is done with the cursor keys of the keyboard, the mouse scroll wheel or simply by dragging the chart with the mouse. Charts can be also shifted step by step with F12 (scrolls by one bar to the left) and Shift+F12 (scrolls by one bar to the right).
If the scale of the chart is fixed, it can be also scrolled vertically.

Screenshot of the Eightcap's MetaTrader 4 Windows app

Add navigators to MT4 charts

You can add indicators from the “Insert” main menu, from the “Navigator” menu by dragging and dropping or from the “Indicators list” button in the toolbar.

Screenshot of the MetaTrader 4 with the 'Insert' menu, 'Indicators', 'Trend' submenus visible

A screenshot taken from a Windows computer showing how to use the 'Navigator' menu on the MetaTrader 4

Screenshot of the MetaTrader 4 with the 'Insert' menu, 'Fibonacci' submenu visible

To delete indicators from the chart just right-click on the indicator and select “Delete Indicator” from the menu.

Screenshot showing how to delete indicator window on Metatrader 4

If you have a lot of indicators added you can right-click on the chart and select “Indicators list” from the menu. A window will appear where you can select as many indicators as you need from all activated ones and delete them at once.

Screenshot showing how to delete indicator window on Metatrader 4

You can learn more about working with indicators from EightCap’s “Open & edit charts. Add indicators to charts in MetaTrader 4” guide.

How to use chart templates and profiles

You can also load, save and delete chart templates from the toolbar.

Screenshot of the MetaTrader 4 with the 'Template' menu, 'Load Template' submenu visible

Modify the chart timeframe from the toolbar or the “Periods” button.

A screenshot taken from a Windows computer showing how to use the 'Periods' menu on the MetaTrader 4

Similarly to Templates, the Profiles option enables you to save and load entire chart groups and their settings. Profiles can be managed from the “File” menu or the “Profiles button” in the toolbar.

Screenshot showing how to save profile on MT4

For your chart analysis, you can also use graphical objects that can be added from the “Insert” menu or the Line Studies toolbar.

Screenshot of the 'Draw trendline' option on MetaTrader 4

How to customize MT4 charts

To customize a chart go to the context menu and then to “Properties” where you are able to change the colors of the different elements in the chart.

You can learn more about customizing the charts and working with templates from EightCap’s add and edit indicators to charts in MetaTrader 4 guide.

Export chart data

You can save the history data of active charts with the “Save as” or “Save as picture” commands from the “File” menu or by right-clicking on the chart. Charts can be saved in various formats like CSV, PRN, HTM, BMP or GIF. You can print your charts from the same menu.

Screenshot of the Eightcap's MetaTrader 4 Windows app, 'File' menu opened with the 'Save As' option hovered

Chart data should be updated occasionally if any errors occur. Just right-click on the chart and select “Refresh” from the menu.

Screenshot showing how to refresh a chart on MT4 desktop

All times are AEDT.