Chart types and how to build them

Charts let you track the price of market instruments and analyse this data using technical indicators and expert advisors. There are three different types of chart in MetaTrader:
  • Line charts
  • Bar charts
  • Candlestick charts

Line charts

Line charts show the closing prices in each trading interval; the prices are connected by straight lines. You can set the length of the trading interval in minutes, hours or days. To open a line chart, do one of the following:
  • Press Alt+3
  • Press the Line chart icon button in the ‘Charts’ toolbar
  • Select ‘Line Chart’ in the ‘Charts’ menu
  • Open the line chart from the ‘Chart Setup’ window
Line Chart example

Figure 1. Sample Line Chart

Bar Chart

Bar charts represent each trading interval as a vertical bar. The bar shows the following information:
  • Maximum price – the top of the bar
  • Minimum price – the bottom of the bar
  • Opening price – the horizontal line to the left of the bar
  • Closing price – the horizontal line to the right of the bar
With bar charts, you should use a trading interval of at least five minutes. To open a bar chart, do one of the following:
  • Press Alt+1
  • Press the Bar chart icon button in the ‘Charts’ toolbar
  • Select ‘Bar Chart’ in the ‘Charts’ menu
  • Open the bar chart from the ‘Chart Setup’ window
Bar Chart example

Figure 2. Sample Bar Chart

Candlesticks

Candlestick charts provide more information than bars charts. They show supply and demand, and reflect the balance between bears and bulls. Candlesticks contain the following:
  • A main rectangular body – this shows the opening and closing price
  • An upper line or wick – this shows the highest price
  • A lower line or wick – this shows the lowest price
The colour of the body provides further information:
  • The body is not filled in when the closing price is higher than the opening price
  • The body is filled in when the closing price is lower than the opening price
To open a candlestick chart, do one of the following:
  • Press Alt+2
  • Press the Candlesticks button in the ‘Charts’ toolbar
  • Select ‘Candlesticks’ in the ‘Charts’ menu
  • Open the candlestick chart from the ‘Chart Setup’ window
Candlesticks chart example

Figure 3. Sample Candlestick Chart