Bid Ask Spread MT4 Indicator


Ever felt like the market is working against you before you even place a trade? That sneaky feeling might be due to the bid-ask spread, a fundamental concept in forex trading that can significantly impact your bottom line. But fear not, intrepid trader! This comprehensive guide will equip you with the knowledge and tools to master the bid-ask spread in MT4, the world’s leading forex trading platform.

Understanding The Bid-Ask Spread

Imagine a bustling marketplace where currencies are traded. Here, buyers (bidders) compete to purchase currencies at the lowest possible price, while sellers (askers) aim to get the highest price. The bid price is the maximum a buyer is willing to pay, and the ask price is the minimum a seller is willing to accept. The crucial difference between these two prices is the bid-ask spread, essentially the transaction cost you incur every time you buy or sell a currency pair.

Why Does The Spread Exist?

The spread exists because forex brokers act as intermediaries, connecting buyers and sellers. They earn their profit by pocketing the difference between the bid and ask price. In essence, it’s a commission for facilitating your trades. While it might seem like a small fee, the spread can quickly add up, especially for frequent traders or those employing scalping strategies that rely on small price movements.

The Impact Of Spread On Trading Costs

Let’s illustrate the impact of spread. Imagine you want to buy EUR/USD (Euro versus US Dollar) at a current ask price of 1.1234. However, the best available bid price is 1.1232. The spread in this case is 2 pips (0.0002). When you buy, you effectively pay 2 pips more than the true market value. Conversely, when you sell at the bid price, you receive 2 pips less than the market value. These seemingly small differences can eat into your profits, especially when dealing with volatile markets or tight profit margins.

Additional Considerations for Spread

While we’ve focused on the mechanics of spread management, here are some additional factors to consider:

  • The Impact of Spread on Different Account Types: The type of forex trading account you choose can influence the spread you pay. Electronic Communication Network (ECN) accounts generally offer tighter spreads but charge commissions per trade. Conversely, Standard accounts typically have wider spreads but no commission fees. Evaluate your trading style and volume to determine the most cost-effective account type.
  • Spread Widening During News Events: Major economic news releases or political events can trigger significant market volatility. During these periods, spreads often widen as liquidity dries up and brokers hedge their exposure. Be mindful of the economic calendar and adjust your trading strategy or avoid trading altogether during high-impact news events.
  • The Role of Spread in Algorithmic Trading: Algorithmic trading, where automated systems execute trades based on pre-defined rules, can be particularly sensitive to spread costs. Backtest your trading strategies to account for spread and ensure your algorithms remain profitable even after factoring in these transaction costs.


The bid-ask spread might seem like an unavoidable hurdle in forex trading, but with the knowledge and tools provided in this guide, you can transform it into a manageable factor. By leveraging the power of MT4 and employing effective spread management strategies, you can gain a significant edge in the competitive forex market. Remember, consistent monitoring, informed decision-making, and a strategic approach are key to conquering the spread and achieving your trading goals.

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