Until recently, the high speed nature of trades in certain financial investments such as CFDs and forex meant that only those in banks with specialised equipment could take advantage of the fluidity and flexibility of these sorts of investments. However, now that just about every home and workplace has a high speed broadband connection, the time has come where every fledgling trader has just as instant access to the latest financial data as full-time city traders and brokers.

This revolution in trading has come about thanks to electronic trading platforms provided by companies like CMC Markets. These platforms can be accessed from a range of devices to suit the interconnected nature of the modern world – from tablets and smartphones to laptop and desktop computers. But these trading platforms go much further than just letting you buy and sell – the best include a suite of handy tools that let you make more accurate predictions and enjoy total command of your investments.

Pattern Recognition Scanners

As the name suggests, a pattern recognition scanner is an automated way to detect and highlight noteworthy changes in a product over increments ranging between a day and fifteen minutes. These patterns come in various shapes, such as the wedge – where a product’s highs and lows contract over time, forming a wedge shape – or the triangle, where the product’s fluctuations stabilise over time. An emerging pattern – one that is currently in the process of being formed – can represent an ideal trading opportunity for investors.

Economic Calendars

News drives the financial markets like no other external stimulus. Trading platforms that incorporate an economic calendar display upcoming announcements and pre-planned events that have the potential to cause big changes in the markets – anything from production figures and profits to annual indices. Economic calendars can also include forecasts of expected figures and the overall impact they will have on the markets. When used with smartphones, these calendars can even deliver notifications for instant updates.

Client Sentiment

A kind of crowdsourcing, client sentiment data can tip you off to the hottest trends and developing changes on a particular product. Client sentiment produces an overview of what other uses of that particular trading platform are putting their money on – for example, showing you what percentage of your fellow traders have shorted a product expecting it to fall. You can even take into account only the trades made by the most profitable clients, letting you see exactly where the winners are placing their investments.