Trading with a low spread is often a requirement if you want your strategy to be successful. Do not forget that the spread is the main cost associated to your transactions, and reducing that cost means increasing the profit. MetaTrader has some ways to show you the spread, but we offer here another indicator to show it on the chart. Below, you will find the free MQL4TA Spread Indicator for MetaTrader.
A spread, mathematically, is the difference between the Ask price and the Bid price. So, it is the difference between the price someone is willing to sell an asset and the price someone else is willing to buy the asset.
If you are a broker, the spread is your profit, because you are charging the spread to your customer.
If you are a trader, the spread is a cost, it is the cost you pay the broker to execute a trade.
Assume the following example: EUR/USD currently has
If you are to buy and then immediately sell EUR/USD, you would buy at 1.12660 and sell at 1.12646, losing 1.4 pips. This is a cost that you pay to your broker.
Nowadays, thanks to computerized systems and competition in the market, you can find very low spreads.
Some brokers offer zero spread accounts, where instead of a spread you can pay a fixed commission.
As a trader, you usually want to minimize your costs — trading at low spreads can make the difference between a losing and winning strategy in some cases.
Here, we will see how MetaTrader shows the spread and how the MQL4TA Spread Indicator for MetaTrader can make things easier for you.
MetaTrader platform (both MT4 and MT5) can show you the spread for its pairs and instruments in the Market Watch panel. This is an option that should be enabled manually.
To enable the spread display in Market Watch, right-click the header and tick the Spread entry in the menu.
The result is the following, where you can see the spread in pipettes in the last column:
In many cases it is easier to watch the spread directly on the chart and expressed in pips. For this purpose, you can use the MQL4TA Spread Indicator for MetaTrader presented below.
The spread indicator works on MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5).
The spread indicator has the following features:
The minimal window is very basic and only shows the spread in pips:
The extended window includes also details about the trading asset:
So when is the spread indicator useful? If you are trading targeting big moves in the market you probably don't care about spreads much and can skip this indicator.
Assume that the spread is 2 pips and you are targeting a move greater than 300 pips. In this case, the spread accounts for less the 1% of the trade so it can likely be ignored.
If you are a scalper or if you trade aiming at only few pips of profit, then spreads cannot be ignored.
The spread is the main cost when it comes to trades, so in many situations you want to trade when the spread is low.
MQL4TA Spread Indicator for MetaTrader allows you to keep the spread monitored, so that you can avoid trading when the spread is too high.
You can download for free MT4 Spread Indicator with the link below and install it by following the provided instructions.
The installation is very easy to perform, so is the use.
Once you run the indicator, you can set whether you want to see a minimal window or an extended interface via its input parameters.
To install the MT4 Spread Indicator, please follow the instructions below:
For a more detailed instruction on how to perform the installation and a tutorial video please visit this page.
You can download the indicator for free using the link below and install it by following the provided instructions.
To install the MT5 Spread Indicator, please follow the instructions below:
For detailed instructions on how to setup the alerts in MetaTrader please refer to our guide on notifications in MT4/MT5..
Here, you not only learned about the spread and how to see it in MetaTrader platform, buy also discovered an alternative spread indicator for MT4 and MT5.