How to Choose a Trading Platform

If you are an expert trader and are looking for a superior trading platform, there are a few things you should know. There are many different types of trading platforms and most of the bells and whistles are geared toward experts. Unfortunately, most of the sophisticated tools, are hidden as brokers look to bring in new traders, many of them novices. Here are several things you should look for to determine if a trading platform will provide the tools you need to successfully trade.

Does the Platform have a Demo Account?

This is a key metric in determining whether a platform is geared to an expert trader. A demo account usually means that a broker believes in their products and is willing to let you test drive them before you begin to trade real capital. A demo account will allow you to test your online trading strategies, using the real-time data that is provided by your broker. Many demo accounts never expire, but some have a time limit. Most have unlimited amounts of demo money that is issued by the broker. You will be able to test multiple types of strategies and also determine if there is any slippage which will prevent you from making the money you believe you can make.

Customer Service

The last thing you want to experience is a broker that will not return your messages. If your broker only has one way of contacting them, it’s a warning sign that issues could occur. Make sure there is a phone number as well as a chat and email as contact method. Spend some time looking online as to how receptive your broker is to customer service requests.

Technical Analysis Tools

While most brokers will have standard technical analysis tools, you want to make sure that you have the capability to draw trend lines, as well as add studies to charts. You should be able to see multiple charts at the same time and easily move from chart to chart. Some advanced brokers allow you to execute your trades directly from a chart, which is a key advantage.  You might also be able to set your stop loss and take profit levels directly by clicking on chart points.

A financial Calendar

A financial calendar is a future log of upcoming events. Advanced calendars that cater to experts have forecasts of future events. For example, let’s say you want a calendar that shows you the average forecast for the release of the US jobs report. You can then compare the actual release with the forecasted release to determine if the new information is priced into the securities you plan to trade. The better financial calendars will show you the actual release instantaneously.

Trading Signals

While many expert traders, formulate their own trading strategies, it’s helpful to have access to signals that are produced by others. Signals are an alert that provides you with an entry point, as well as stop loss and take profit levels.

Summary

Before you begin to trade real capital, make sure you evaluate a broker’s platform to determine if they provide enough supporting services to help you generate the returns you hope to get.