If you are in the process of deciding on a new trading platform, it is helpful to determine the features that are most important to you. There are a wide range of nuances that each platform can provide, for example downloadable, browser-based, or mobile platforms.
You want to make sure you have access to a plethora of tradable instruments and have access to charts and technical analysis features. Before you give your money to a broker to use their trading platform, make sure you demo the platform using a demo account.
What Type of Platforms are Available
Most brokers will provide trading platforms that are downloadable onto your hard drive. There are also plenty of very good browser-based platforms. The benefit of a browser-based platform is that you don’t have to worry about whether your computer has enough memory to launch the platform. You only need access to the internet, which allows you to launch your trading platform while you are on the go. Speak of being on the move, it’s helpful to have access to a mobile platform that works in conjunction with your desktop trading platform.
What Features are Important
You want to make sure you have access to:
- Equity Indices
- Equity Shares
Your trading account should be able to execute trades in several different assets. You don’t want to lock into a platform that only provides access to 1 or 2 assets. Make sure that within each category there are also several different securities. For example, you want to make sure that you can trade major currency pairs, as well as cross-currency pairs and emerging currency pairs.
Using a Demo Account
Before you begin to trade the assets that are offered by your platform, you should test drive the execution module using a demo account. A demo account allows you to trade in real-time. You can practice transacting and make sure you are trading what you expected to trade. You can see how your positions look as well as what your balances would look like. You can also test your strategies using a demo account. You will then be able to see in real-time if your strategy works.
The Charting Software
You want to make sure that the platform you use has charting software. This type of software allows you to see past price action in a graph. You can add trend lines as well as moving averages to find support and resistance levels. You also want to make sure you have access to technical analysis tools. This would include studies such as momentum and moving averages, as well as oscillators.
You can use this type of software to develop a technical trading strategy. In addition, you want to make sure you have access to a financial calendar as well as educational material.
A financial calendar plots important news releases on a calendar so you know when the news will be announced. It will tell you to want is expected and compare it to the actual release. In addition, you want to make sure your platform has an educational portal. This is important whether you are a novice trader or an expert. You always need answers to a key trading question. In addition, you want to make sure you have access to both videos and articles that provide information about building trading strategies as well as defining your risk management.