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Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI
by Do Or Die 07-26-2011, 09:58 PM

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Hi,

This article is a build up on the previous one- Trend Following Vs Mean Reversion: Trading Regimes. I will now try to clarify the meaning of Trading Regimes using RSI as an example, before we move to more sophisticated methods. This is a discretionary method, but conceptually strong, and can serve as an intro to quantitative methods. We will gradually shift to the crux, "Big moves are often preceded by contraction,and followed by expansion in volatility, this works across all time frames." There is also significant academic research on regime shifting, and you can find papers on SSRN. Two other relevant links are Relative Strength - Internal and Introduction to Understanding Volatility

Most trading strategies can be categorized into two different camps: Trend Following and Mean Reverting.

An example of trend following is buying when prices cross above a moving average. For trend following systems or strategies, simply buying and holding the market has it's benefits. First and foremost - It's simple and when markets catch a trend, it can run and run. However, Trend following relies on directional moves. Your strategy will lose if the market is sideways; and, the markets CAN remain in a sideways mode until you go bonkers. You can make a trend following strategy howsoever complicated using MACD, ADX, Parabolic SAR. But if the strategy is "trend following" it will not perform in sideways market.

An example of mean reverting will be- buying when a oscillator tuns upwards from a oversold stage. Mean reverting strategies relies on the assumption that market cannot continue in one direction for prolonged time; it will "revert" back to a theoretical mean. The "mean" is always shifting ofcourse. The moving average is a good example of a mean around which prices move around. Trading using price bands (eg. bollinger bands) and channels is also an example of a mean reverting strategy. These strategies lose money in trending markets.

The aim of these articles is to establish a method of switching between strategies as they blow hot and cold, so you don't continue to follow the strategies that aren't adapting to current market conditions.

Shifting Strategies using RSI

  • A sharp and extended move to either the overbought or oversold area signifies the start of a directional move. Refer to Mega Overbought stage at Relative Strength - Internal. The opposite conditions qualify for a Mega Oversold stage which indicates the start of a new downtrend.
  • An uptrend is marked by the fact that RSI will not reach the lower parts of its range. RSI typically moves in the range >40 in an uptrend while touching >70 area often.
  • A downtrend is marked by RSI does not reaches the upper part of its range. In a downtrend it will tend to remain below 60 and move toward <30 area often.
  • A sideways trend is marked by RSI moving >70 and <30 area.

When the market is trending, the Moving Average Crossover with price is used to generate signals. When the market is sideways, the oscillator turning up (down) from a oversold (overbought) stage is used to generate signals.



Note the period where all signals are discarded, whether they come from a trend following or a mean reverting method. This is because the regime shift is not clear, as per the definition above. From a historical perspective it looks more like a sideways market and should have given money from a mean reverting strategy.

The improvement by switching strategies should be very apparent in this example. The productivity of your trading system/methodology can improve dramatically by including a 'regime analysis' or 'adaptive layer' on top of strategies. I currently use a custom indicator for regime analysis, however, it can be achieved through many techniques.

Please post a comment- they encourage me to provide better examples.
Attached Thumbnails
Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI-trending.png   Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI-sideways.png   Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI-trading-regime.png  
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Comments (15)

Old 07-28-2011, 03:17 PM   #2

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

thanks for the thread.
interesting observations, I will study them this weekend.
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:14 PM   #3

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Interesting application of RSI.. thanks
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Old 07-29-2011, 07:44 AM   #4

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Very interesting indeed.

I will also be studying it this weekend. I will provide feedback.
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Old 07-30-2011, 01:47 AM   #5

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Hi Do or Die,

Thank you for the thread. I will also follow along and I know I'll learn a lot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Do Or Die »
Please post a comment- they encourage me to provide better examples.
Which method do you think would be more successful? Do you think it would be more successful to keep it simple and just use the RSI or are there better indicators to use for mean reversion? Also do you recommend this for a beginner trader like myself?

Thank you again for the thread.
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Old 07-30-2011, 05:28 AM   #6

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Quote:
Originally Posted by umfan92 »
Which method do you think would be more successful? Do you think it would be more successful to keep it simple and just use the RSI or are there better indicators to use for mean reversion? Also do you recommend this for a beginner trader like myself?
Hi Umfan,

As I previously mentioned, for beginner traders it is good to understand one technique/indicator before moving to another.

The other day I was discussing with Phantom about divergences- most oscillators behave in same way. You do not need to research each of them to learn about trading overbot/oversold levels. Studying one will be sufficient. You can stick to only one (say RSI) http://www.traderslaboratory.com/for...-internal.html Once you are fully comfortable with it, you can tweak them to suit your trading style (example Trading Regime Analysis Using RWI
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Old 08-02-2011, 11:44 AM   #7
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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Do or Die,
Why RSI length of 10? Thanks.
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:05 PM   #8

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Re: Trading Regime Analysis Using RSI

Do or Die,
Have you tried a length of 2?
Thanks
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