Forex: Demo before you dive in

Dec 01,  · MT4 Trading Simulator Pro is an Expert Advisor, which can be run in MT4's Strategy Tester. It turns normal backtesting into a Forex simulation. It allows you to replay the market and trade manually using historical data.

In addition to these platforms most brokers offer additional platforms, although these additional options may be proprietary to the broker. Nevertheless it should be noted most brokers will tend to conserve resources by allowing the demo account to conduct paper trades only on one specific trading platform. What is a forex trading demo account? FX Empire may receive compensation from the companies featured on the network.

Placing Orders

Try FXCM's free forex trading demo account that enables traders to practice risk-free in live market conditions via forex simulator.

Due to the fact that the forex market is a decentralized market, most forex brokers have their own price feeds disseminated through their own trading platforms. Some of these trading platforms are proprietary and have their own specific strengths and weaknesses.

Because forex demo accounts are supposed to simulate how trading live will be feel like with a real money trading account, they are basically the same in every aspect as with a real account trading platform with the only exception being the fact that virtual cash is used to make a trade. The price quotes and charts used are as what the traders will be getting when they start to trade the forex market with real money.

A forex demo account basically is designed to serve 2 primary purposes. Secondly, it serves as a testing ground for experienced traders to test out their trading strategies before implementing the strategies in a live trading scenario. As mentioned earlier, a demo trading account is supposed to serve as a demonstrator platform.

Hence, the layout and various functionalities of the demo platform will be same as what traders will find when they switch to live trading. To properly evaluate a demo trading platform, you should check the demo platform for the following:. Different trading platforms have different ways of presenting the various functionalities of the trading platforms.

For example, some trading platforms have a basic layout that focuses on mainly order entries, price quotes and transactions reporting. Other trading platforms on the other hand may take a more integrated approach where the trading charts, price quotes and trade history are all displayed on a single trading screen.

The trading platform represents your gateway to the forex market. It allows you to buy and sell currency pairs based on the trading parameters that you specify or established. However in order for you to be able to properly gauge the performance of a trading platform, you must at least place a few dozen trades using the demo platform. By doing so, you will be able to be familiar with the way an order is being placed through the trading platform.

In other words, it gives you a chance to answer questions such as:. The forex demo account is also an important tool which you can use to evaluate the reporting system of the trading platform.

For most beginner traders, the reporting aspect of the trading platform is often overlooked since their primary focus is on how to execute trades.

However, it should be remembered that the profits earned from trading the forex market can be liable for taxes. Tax liabilities are the sole responsibility of a trader. The forex broker who operates on an international scale does not provide any information on tax liabilities or handle any tax documentation on behalf of a trader since the tax laws differ from country to country.

Since the trader is required to provide all the necessary documentation to the relevant tax authority, the trader will rely heavily on the trading reports that are supplied by the broker. In order that the job of compiling all the necessary information for the tax authority is as easy as possible, you want the trading platform to be able to provide detailed trade histories in an organized manner.

The way the information is reported by the trading platform could easily translate in hours spent trying to reconcile your tax report or simply a minute spent on printing it out. Hence, a platform that can help you to reconcile all the trades that you are going to make can be invaluable when you need to declare the income earned or losses made to the taxman. It is a standard practice in the online forex trading industry for brokers to offer a demo account to their potential clients.

To make the process of acquiring a demo account as easy as possible, most brokers only require potential clients to register for the demo account with just a few basic details such as the name and email of the trader. The following diagram below shows the typical signup form which traders have to fill in to gain access to the demo account.

As to the question of which trading platforms offers a demo account, this depends very much on the individual brokers. Some forex brokers supply their clients with a choice of several types of trading platforms. In order to give their clients a proper overall view of the platforms that they offer, the demo account will permit the trader to try out all the different platforms from a single demo account.

Nevertheless it should be noted most brokers will tend to conserve resources by allowing the demo account to conduct paper trades only on one specific trading platform. Although forex demo accounts are able to provide traders with numerous benefits, they do have their own set of limitations.

So while it can provide a trader with the opportunity for unlimited profits, it carries with it a enormous level of risk which all forex brokers are required by law to warn their clients about.

The risks are increased exponentially when leveraged trading involved. In some cases, it is possible for a trader to lose more money than he initially deposited.

In order for a forex demo account to be of any use, you must learn to treat it like a real account. By having such a frame of mind, this will help to ease your transition from a practice account to a live account at a later stage. Nevertheless, to help you get more out of your forex demo account, below are 7 tips on how to maximize the use of the forex demo account. Beginner traders often in their zeal to get started trading as soon as possible often neglect to familiarize themselves with all the various features of the trading platform.

Instead of making the same mistakes, use the demo account to learn as much as possible of the capabilities of the trading platform. Commit sufficient time so you will be able to understand how the trading platform functions and use it capabilities to your trading advantage.

With the risk free environment provided the demo account, use it test out all the trading orders that are supported by the trading platform. Test each order and see which is the best time to use them. To use these trading orders effectively, learn how to calculate the optimum levels to set these trading orders. With some brokers offering a leverage ratio as high as 1: Instead of taking on unnecessary risks, use the demo account to determine the right leverage ratio for your particular trading style.

Knowing the right leverage ratio to use is a good risk management tactic especially when the market is extremely volatile. Most forex brokers offer their traders a wide selection of currency pairs as well as different CFDs to trade with.

The danger of having too many instruments to trade with is the fact that you might lose focus. Instead learn to focus your energy and concentration on a few pairs and learn how to master trading them using the demo account.

Although the standard lot size in forex trading is , units, most forex brokers offer different trading account types which have different lot sizes that their traders can trade with. For example, the micro account lets traders trade in a lot size of units whereas the mini account let traders trade in a minimum lot size of 10, units. Use the demo account to help you determine what is the ideal lot size that you should trade with. In addition to these platforms most brokers offer additional platforms, although these additional options may be proprietary to the broker.

This means that platform may not be available from other brokers. For additional reading, see " Beginner's Guide to MetaTrader 4. While each platform may function and look slightly different, most provide roughly the same features. Some platforms have more features than others. For a trader taking long-term trades this may be important, but for a short-term trader it isn't. Below this is a charting window to see the price history of a currency pair or other asset.

Below the chart is the terminal. There are multiple tabs in the terminal, providing access to news, account history, current trades, and other information. As mentioned, not every platform is set up this way, but most offer the same features just arranged in a different way.

It's a good idea to place at least 50 demo trades on each platform before trading actual money, just so you can master the specifics of order entry on each platform. A trader should never trade live unless he or she can confidently answer all of the following questions:. Here is a sample order screen in MT4. To bring up a detailed order screen like this, in most trading platforms you can right-click on a chart or quote and select new order or new trade.

On the left is a very short-term chart of the currency pair the trade will take place in. This currency pair is also listed at the top of the trade box.

Next, input the volume you want to trade. Enter a stop loss and take profit level for the trade. The trade type can be a market order or a pending order.

If you want to buy or sell at a different price, choose pending. With a pending order there are more options, as you need to input the price you want to buy or sell at. You may also choose to put an expiry on the order. Once everything is filled out, place the order. One function that most new FX traders overlook is tax reporting.

Because FX is a global, unregulated market, dealers as a general rule do not provide any documentation to the tax authorities in the trader's country of residence. Tax reporting is solely the responsibility of the trader. Such an arrangement clearly calls for a trading platform with highly organized and flexible reporting functions. But reporting quality varies greatly from dealer to dealer.