When the market has been trending lower then suddenly forms a reversal wick candlestick , the likelihood of
a reversal increases since buyers have finally begun to overwhelm the sellers. Selling pressure rules the decline,
but responsive buyers entered the market due to perceived undervaluation. For the reversal wick to open near the
high of the candle, sell off sharply intra-bar, and then rally back toward the open of the candle is bullish , as it
signifies that the bears no longer have control since they were not able to extend the decline of the candle, or the
trend. Instead, the bulls were able to rally price from the lows of the candle and close the bar near the top of its
range, which is bullish - at least for one bar, which hadn't been the case during the bearish trend.
Essentially, when a reversal wick forms at the extreme of a trend, the market is telling you that the trend
either has stalled or is on the verge of a reversal. Remember, the market auctions higher in search of sellers, and
lower in search of buyers. When the market over-extends itself in search of market participants, it will find itself
out of value, which means responsive market participants will look to enter the market to push price back toward
an area of perceived value. This will help price find a value area for two-sided trade to take place. When the
market finds itself too far out of value, responsive market participants will sometimes enter the market with
force, which aggressively pushes price in the opposite direction, essentially forming reversal wick candlesticks .
This pattern is perhaps the most telling and common reversal setup, but requires steadfast confirmation in order
to capitalize on its power. Understanding the psychology behind these formations and learning to identify them
quickly will allow you to enter positions well ahead of the crowd, especially if you've spotted these patterns at
potentially overvalued or undervalued areas.
Fade (Extreme) Reversal
The extreme reversal setup is a clever pattern that capitalizes on the ongoing psychological patterns of
investors, traders, and institutions. Basically, the setup looks for an extreme pattern of selling pressure and then
looks to fade this behavior to capture a bullish move higher (reverse for shorts). In essence, this setup is visually
pointing out oversold and overbought scenarios that forces responsive buyers and sellers to come out of the dark
and put their money to work-price has been over-extended and must be pushed back toward a fair area of value
so two-sided trade can take place.
This setup works because many normal investors, or casual traders, head for the exits once their trade
begins to move sharply against them. When this happens, price becomes extremely overbought or oversold,
creating value for responsive buyers and sellers. Therefore, savvy professionals will see that price is above or
below value and will seize the opportunity. When the scared money is selling, the smart money begins to buy, and
Look at it this way, when the market sells off sharply in one giant candlestick , traders that were short
during the drop begin to cover their profitable positions by buying. Likewise, the traders that were on the
sidelines during the sell-off now see value in lower prices and begin to buy, thus doubling up on the buying
pressure. This helps to spark a sharp v-bottom reversal that pushes price in the opposite direction back toward
Engulfing (Outside) Reversal
The power behind this pattern lies in the psychology behind the traders involved in this setup. If you have
ever participated in a breakout at support or resistance only to have the market reverse sharply against you, then
you are familiar with the market dynamics of this setup. What exactly is going on at these levels? To understand
this concept is to understand the outside reversal pattern. Basically, market participants are testing the waters
above resistance or below support to make sure there is no new business to be done at these levels. When no
initiative buyers or sellers participate in range extension, responsive participants have all the information they
need to reverse price back toward a new area of perceived value.
As you look at a bullish outside reversal pattern, you will notice that the current bar's low is lower than the
prior bar's low. Essentially, the market is testing the waters below recently established lows to see if a downside
follow-through will occur. When no additional selling pressure enters the market, the result is a flood of buying
pressure that causes a springboard effect, thereby shooting price above the prior bar's highs and creating the
beginning of a bullish advance.
If you recall the child on the trampoline for a moment, you'll realize that the child had to force the bounce
mat down before he could spring into the air. Also, remember Jennifer the cake baker? She initially pushed price
to $20 per cake, which sent a flood of orders into her shop. The flood of buying pressure eventually sent the price
of her cakes to $35 apiece. Basically, price had to test the $20 level before it could rise to $35.
Let's analyze the outside reversal setup in a different light for a moment. One of the reasons I like this setup
is because the two-bar pattern reduces into the wick reversal setup, which we covered earlier in the chapter. If
you are not familiar with candlestick reduction, the idea is simple. You are taking the price data over two or more
candlesticks and combining them to create a single candlestick . Therefore, you will be taking the open, high, low,
and close prices of the bars in question to create a single composite candlestick .
The doji candlestick is the epitome of indecision. The pattern illustrates a virtual stalemate between buyers
and sellers, which means the existing trend may be on the verge of a reversal. If buyers have been controlling a
bullish advance over a period of time, you will typically see full-bodied candlesticks that personify the bullish
nature of the move. However, if a doji candlestick suddenly appears, the indication is that buyers are suddenly
not as confident in upside price potential as they once were. This is clearly a point of indecision, as buyers are no
longer pushing price to higher valuation, and have allowed sellers to battle them to a draw-at least for this one
candlestick . This leads to profit taking, as buyers begin to sell their profitable long positions, which is heightened
by responsive sellers entering the market due to perceived overvaluation. This "double whammy" of selling
pressure essentially pushes price lower, as responsive sellers take control of the market and push price back
toward fair value.
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