In this lesson, we’ll cover how to set up currency charts to trade price action. This section may not apply to everyone as we can only show you how we set up our charts using the MetaTrader 4 (MT4) platform.
Although even if you’re trading from a different platform, you can still use the same layout and colors. This brings us to our next point. There’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to chart layout and colors. Some may prefer a bullish candle to show as blue vs. white. It comes down to whatever works best for you.
Having said that, we’d like to keep the forums as consistent as possible when posting charts. Therefore we’d really appreciate it if you could use something close to what we’re about to discuss. Of course, you can use different colors, but we’d like for the layout to remain the same.
For example, the blogs on our website are created using a candlestick chart, so please try to refrain from using a bar chart when posting in the forum. This will make it less confusing for everyone. We appreciate your understanding. So let’s get to it!
How to set up currency charts?
In MT4, the first thing you’ll want to do is pick a chart to use as your template. It doesn’t matter which currency pair or time frame since we’ll be creating a template that will be applied to all charts. Once you have a chart up, right-click on each indicator (if applicable) and select “Delete Indicator”. You’ll want to do this for any indicator you currently have on the chart.
Now that we have a clean canvas to work from, right-click anywhere on the chart and select “Properties…” You should see the following screen.
MT4 makes it really easy to get the same look we use on our charts. Simply click the drop-down menu where it says “Color scheme” at the top of the window and select “Black On White”. This gives you a clean-looking chart where bullish candles are white and bearish candles are black. This is what works best for us but feel free to play around with these colors.
Note: It may seem silly to spend time choosing the right color combination, but trust us when we tell you it makes a huge difference.
Everyone’s eyes are different and choosing the combination that allows you to easily spot price action is important. It’s also important to choose colors that are easy on your eyes. You want something that you can look at for long periods of time without becoming fatigued. For this reason, we’d recommend staying away from neon colors but again, the decision is yours. The next thing you’ll want to do is customize your chart settings. For this, you’ll need to select the “Common” tab. Here’s how we have our chart setup.
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We like to keep “Chart autoscroll” turned off and “Chart shift” turned on. Autoscroll will automatically scroll your chart every time price changes. This can be annoying especially when trying to analyze past market activity. We like chart shift because it provides some room between the current candle and the hard edge of your chart, giving you more white space which makes it easier to trade price action.
Saving the Template
Now that you know how to set up your currency charts, you’ll want to save this chart as a template so that you don’t have to repeat this on every chart. So once you’ve perfected your chart’s appearance, right-click anywhere on the chart and hover over “Template” and select “Save Template”.
Name it whatever you like in the default folder. Now when you go to the next chart, you can simply right click and hover over “Template” once again. This time you should see your saved template in the list of those available. Simply click on your saved template and it should load onto the current chart. Repeat these for each currency pair.
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