It goes without saying that MetaTrader4 is available at the vast majority of the FX brokers. In addition to this, the largest share of these brokers would supply their traders with one only choice – MT4. Even though I am personally not the biggest fan of the software released by MetaQuotes, I do understand why this trading platform became so popular. Its rock-solid stability, rich functionality and endless library of custom coded indicators and robots certainly compensate for the sloppy design and lack of updates.
Traders don’t always like the same things as brokers do.
Yet today we are not here to speak about MT4, we are going to conduct a little research and identify the platform that is the 2nd most popular amongst the retail FX sector.
2nd most popular platform amongst brokers
Quite a few brokers supply their proprietary platforms either as the only choice of platform or in addition to MT4 and / or other pieces of trading software. Such platforms include eToro OpenBook, Plus500 Trader, FXCM TradeStation and so on. Next to this, there are some brokers that have developed their own platform, which is also available as a White-Label solution. One such platform is xStation from XTB.
It is clear that none of the platforms released by a broker could be as widespread as a 3rd party solution. If we disregard the traded volume and simply consider the amount of brokers using a certain 3rd party platform (which is not MT4), we will come to the conclusion that the 2nd most popular trading platform is – MetaTrader 5, as it is currently available with more than 20 brokers.
If we actually take the volume into consideration, it becomes clear that some brokers only offer MT5 trading on a demo account. Next to this, brokers tend to generate only a fractional volume on this platform. Hence one could safely assume that the 2nd most popular platform amongst brokers would be cTrader, if we judge by the volume traded through the platform.
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I also spotted some broker offering SIRIX Trader, as it tends to be a powerful solution that combines social trading with a webtrader. Most of the brokers offering this platform tend to be low-end ones and I doubt that these brokers would generate some decent volumes through SIRIX Trader.
2nd most popular platform amongst traders
Traders don’t always like the same things as brokers do. While the majority of the brokers choose MetaTrader 5 as their 2nd platform, it seems like traders are looking into a different direction. To understand the traders’ preferences, I knew that asking brokers about the number of their clients would not get me far.
This is why I have taken a look at the number of mobile platform downloads, gone through the forums and concluded that cTrader seems to be the 2nd most used platform amongst traders. Also, this platform seems to gain quite strong dynamics, as every year it is adopted by more and more brokers.
But wait, what about Japan?
About one third of the total retail FX volume comes from Japan and it is safe to assume that the trading preferences in this country are going to be different. When taking a look at the websites of Japanese brokers, I spotted a surprising fact, MetaTrader 4 actually does not seem to be popular at all.
Most of the brokers tend to offer their own trading solution, yet ActTrader seems to be a viable option as a 3rd party platform in Japan.
Even though it is quite challenging to select the 2nd most popular platform for retail FX trading, I would go with cTrader by Spotware as this platform has the best dynamics. Only some 2 years ago there were nearly 3 times less brokers offering this platform, so we can certainly see quite a nice potential. Also, if you are a frequent user of cTrader, you have noticed the amount of updates the platform gets on a monthly basis. Bug fixes, new indicators, extended customization options, new types of orders. All this is just a share of what gets released by Spotware.