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Found 5 results

  1. Gaps occur every day to varying degrees on stocks and indices. To the stock trader, these gaps can offer enough trading opportunities to be done trading by mid-morning and many are. That being said, these gapers, depending how they have gapped, can provide additional trade setups later in the day as well as in the coming days. In this Chart of the Week, we'll review two gaps and a strategy how to have played them, use in the future and why they should continue the move. As I mentioned, gaps occur in varying degrees. Those gaps also can be in the direction of the prior day's movement or against them. With the prior days of movement the gap can be a continuation (pro) type of gap or it can be an exhaustion (novice) type of gap. The difference is based on whether the gap occurred after some type of correction within a trend, e.g., a gap up after a pullback or a consolidation base within an uptrend. The exhaustion gap occurs after prices have been trending in one direction for a period of time and then prices gap in that direction. All price movement reflects traders' and investors' beliefs and emotions; however, gaps can provide a shock element to price movement when the gap is against the recent price direction. Those educated and experienced trading gaps aren't shocked by continuation and exhaustion gaps, since they are expected based on the existing trend, location of support, resistance and pattern of candles. When prices gap in the opposite direction of the current pattern that partially or completely reverse the direction of the prior bar or two, it's a shock. The larger the immediate candle before the gap and the size of gap against it, the greater the shock and potential opportunity to profit. Let's look at two. American Express (AXP) had started to move lower with a large gap down, slightly recovered, stalled and then broke lower and closed with a huge red candle that closed near the low of the day. That day also occurred with an increase in volume. The pattern was pointing toward AXP moving lower, but that didn't happen. Rather, AXP gapped up the next day more than 50% into the prior red candle's range! Gaps like this shock traders since the prior pattern did not suggest such a large move in the opposite direct. We can correctly assume that traders are short were expecting AXP to move lower based on the pattern. What do you think they are going to do if AXP doesn't immediately collapse lower? This is what sets up a "Gap and Go" type of morning for stock traders to take advantage of. If AXP can move higher above the high (red line), it should continue moving up. But let's look at the intra-day chart that day and how it setup. On the gap up AXP cleared its resistance area, but the gap higher also leaves a partial void of support that has the potential to be filled. For that reason, entering long immediately could result in a move lower and without a clear area to place a stop-loss. What to do? Let AXP form a price pattern signaling that buyers are stepping up and taking control again in the form a reversal pattern. These patterns can happen in many ways, but the trained trader will follow Bar by Bar and see whatever the pattern is as it unfolds. The odds are AXP will move up based on the daily shock setup. AOL Inc. (AOL) is another example of a gap and shock. AOL was moving up toward resistance, but had closed strong the near the day's high and with an expanding range. The next day AOL gapped under that large green daily bar. What are all the traders that bought AOL that day now holding or anyone that bought in the prior two weeks? Right, losses! What would you do if you were long? Cut and run? Hope it comes back to get even? Buy more? The last two choices typically don't work out very well. No one likes losing, but it happens. Professional traders and investors have a plan that includes a stop-loss and stick to it. A gap lower under a large daily green candle strongly signals that prices will go lower, but gaps create voids and the intra-day entry must be formed. Here I have included the15-minute chart to see why prices stalled moving higher; the resistance (supply) to the left. The 2-minute detail provides the pattern signaling the setup on the current day in alignment with the big picture. These are some of the basics of what to look for when trading a gap. Look for daily shocks, prior areas of support or resistance where traders will take positions and a current pattern that forms in alignment with the big picture analysis. The odds will be in your side. All the best, Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Trading
  2. Making a Bottom

    This stock isn't going to be the next big mover like Apple (AAPL) was in its hay-day, but it has formed a bottom and signaled the start of a move higher last week. Bottoming formations take time and typically have multiple retests of prior lows, breakdown failures (BDF) and false starts. One signal that has had a high degree of not being a false start coming out of a base is the Bullish Wide Range Bar (+WRB) on increasing volume. After falling lower with virtually no bounces at all in 2011, Corning Inc. (GLW) began to form a bottom. Like most bottoming formations GLW had its retests, failed attempts to move higher, (none ever cleared any prior highs) and a breakdown failure that was retested. Notice after the move up from that retest GLW based sideways at resistance. Pristine Tip: Basing at resistance after a move up signals buyers absorbing the supply and bullish. Last week, GLW formed a +WRB with increasing volume and closed above its recent resistance area. Look further to the left and you will see other large green candles, some even with an increase in volume, but none of them cleared prior highs. Those prior highs still have to be overcome; however, the price action that has occurred after them suggests that is going to happen. By putting together the parts of the overall price action that has occurred we have the making of a bottom and bullish signal. I could have put a few indicators on the chart to show you how they are becoming bullish and signaling a move higher also. Most likely would create a belief in those indicators as a reliable way of determining a bottom. In time, you would be moving on to the next indicator someone else used. This is the cycle most go through forever and never understand how to read the interaction between buyers (demand) and sellers (supply). Bottoms form in different ways, but if you learn to read the price action the way I've explained, you will be able to determine when that is happened. Whether you trade stocks, commodities, currencies or the market indices learn to read the price action, not indicators that attempt to read the price action for you. All the best, Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  3. When to Trade What, Part 2 of 3

    Good Morning All: If the title sounds a little confusing, it was meant to. The issue to be discussed today, is not just 'when' to trade. There are trades that can be done any time the market is trading. That does not mean that you should be trading all day long, it just means that the times you pick to trade can be any time, IF you know what to trade. That is the point of this article. When to Trade What, Part 2 of 3 That was the opening paragraph last week in part one of this three part series. In the last letter we looked at some 'pre market' organization, and we discussed the first reversal time, 9:35 (all times are Eastern, New York, 'market' time). We then mentioned the next two reversal times, 10:00 and 10:30. This week, we will talk about those two key times, as well as the beginning of the 'lunch hour'. Next week we will conclude with part three. There are 9 micro reversal times. 4-5 of them are major and critical. Also, understanding HOW to use them and HOW they interact is imperative. Let's look at the morning reversals, 10:00 and 10:30: There is also a minor reversal time at 11:15. It is simply amazing how many traders do not use the reversal times to their advantage. This probably spawns from the fact that many traders do not even know or understand them. If you are one of those traders, you are going to learn something that will change your trading career in the next couple of paragraphs. A picture says a thousand words, so look at the charts below. These are the three five-minute charts of the QQQ from the last three days, period. We generally give the reversal times a window of 5-10 minutes on each side. The key is when the Pristine Buy or Sell setup occurs, at the approximate time. The yellow 'stars' show the two major reversal times we are discussing. They are all happening 'right on the money', though they do not need to in order to be effective. Note two things. First, the second chart is slightly off on the 10.30 reversal, but the 10.30 low was only pennies off the low of the day, and again, it is the buy setup that happens once in that area that matters. Second, these charts are simply that last three days. They are not the result of a special search. If you continue this exercise on your own, you will be astonished. Most other days are even more amazing. Note, that the 10:00 and 10:30 major reversal times form a reversal, every time, and one of them usually sets the high or low for the day, or at least for the morning. This is typical of what you will find every day. Again, no effort was used to find these charts for this article. The only time this is not 'amazing' is when we have 'power trend' days that do not really reverse at all, and that is because the very definition of a power trend day is that the market carries a trend one way all day. Sometimes these days don not begin until the 10:00 reversal time puts in the first reversal, but these power trend days are rare; usually one every other month. Don't believe it? No problem, go take a look for yourself. Go print out a bunch of five-minute charts. Print them from the market, the futures, or your favorite stocks. Print some from this week, some from a month ago, some from two months ago. It does not matter. Then go through and draw vertical lines at 10:00, and 10:30. You will be shocked and amazed that virtually every day, you have drawn lines though the high and low of the day, or at least the high, until much later in the day. And you thought trading was tough. The next time period to look at is the beginning and ending of lunch. These times can change a little depending on if the market is 'trending' or choppy. Generally, the last true move ends around 12:20. We often count lunch as starting at 12:00, but if there is a strong trend in place, it may follow through until 12:30. On strong trend days, the last reversal around 1:30 often sets the trend back in place. If it is a choppy market (80% of the time), lunch may stay choppy, until the 2:15 reversal time. This one is usually in stone, and the whole lunch concept, as well as the afternoon reversals, will be discussed next week. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  4. This week I want to share with you one of the most enlightening moments in my learning process related to the use of trendlines. When I decided to educate myself about technical analysis and the markets there were no online trading seminars. There were no seminars at all, but if there were they wouldn't have been online since there was no internet. However, there were market letters that that came by snail-mail that did some education along with trade recommendations. All used trendlines in the analysis. Let's review what is taught about the use of trend lines and questions I had after using them. Trend line Analysis: A trend line needs at least two connecting points. A trend line with three or more points is stronger The trend line connecting points shouldn't be too close The trend line shouldn't be too steep or shallow An uptrend line will act as support A downtrend line will act as resistance A trend line once broken will have the opposite effect The break of a long existing trend line changes the trend Questioning the validity for trendlines: Should trendlines be drawn from bar extremes or the closes? Are trendlines drawn in a higher time frame stronger? Are intersecting trendlines a stronger reference point? Are trendlines valid in all time frames, even a 1-min.? Is a trend line drawn on an Arithmetic scaled chart more valid than those on a Semi-log scaled chart? Is the break of a trend line really a change in the trend? How many times can a trend line be redrawn? Can extending a line really predict where prices will reverse? My conclusion about the use of trendlines is that while widely used and have the potential to effect price movement on market indices especially, they are subjective as reference points of support and resistance at best and not needed. If you have used trendlines, had one break, seen prices reverse back in the original direction and you then redrew the line like I have. The question that came to my mind was, is it possible to "connect the dots" again and locate support and resistance? It didn't make sense, not common sense. The answer was no. The enlightening moment came when I realize that the analysis of support and resistance is not to be done diagonally, it has to be done horizontally. It was so simple, but all the hocus-pocus analysis taught made it so hard to get to that point. Besides the basic Trend Line there are Gann lines, Gann Box lines, Regression Channel lines. Median Lines, Andrews Pitchfork Lines, Fibonacci Circle lines, Fibonacci Fan Lines and it goes on and on. It should be no surprise why so many are confused about the use of technical analysis. Been there or there right now? Here what to do, simply look to the left and stop drawing lines! Let's review the trend lines and the real coming overhead resistance on some of the broader market indices. In the chart above of the S&P 500 ETF symbol SPY, I drew the downtrend line. Clearly, prices ignored it like it was not there. Actually, it is only there for those that drew it, so it only exists as a reference point for them, in their minds; it's not real. What is real is the area in red, which is there for everyone. Somewhere in that box sellers are going to overcome buyers. Will that be for a day, two days? How far will prices drop? That's the unknown. Right now there is no pattern to suggest that. The only thing known is that the area to the left is resistance and the move up has the greatest odds of stalling in the box. In the chart above the Nasdaq 100 ETF QQQ, I drew the downtrend line and we see that prices did stall at the line before moving higher. Was the line the reason? No it was not, it was the small area of price resistance to the left. Resistance does not mean prices have to go lower. Especially, when prices have fallen for a while as these did into an area of Major Support (MS) (not shown) where buyers will show up. The Qs entered into the area of price resistance Friday and sellers are going to show up in there. The 200-MA is also in the box and while subjective as a reference point of resistance, it is a widely followed point of reference. Notice the number of overlapping candles that are directly to the left of it and the unfilled gap. n the chart above of the Russell 2000 ETF symbol IWM, I drew the downtrend line. Odds are prices are going to stall there and trend line users will point to that. Why will prices stall there? Because price resistance is to the left and the other markets are coming into resistance also. It just happens to work out this way once and a while. Technical analysis does not have to be complicated; however, we have a tendency to follow what is when it comes to the markets. I did years ago, but eventually realized the majority of what is taught is nonsense. I don't know how all this nonsense started, but it's been going on a long time and continues. Most do not side-step this black hole on the way to finding the truth, if they ever do. You don't have to or can get out of it now. Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
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