1 0 Tag Archives: Foreign exchange market
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Technical analysis of stock trends

If you have ever indulged in any form of stock trading, you would definitely have taken a look at a price chart at some point in time to study price movements. For many investors and analysts, a stock price chart is the starting point for carrying out an analysis and even people who do not believe in technical analysis use charts from time to time. Charts can provide a lot of information in a very short space of time.

For instance, if you are looking at long-term investment, you can take a quick look at a price chart of say five years and determine at a single glance how investors have been rewarded. If you see a lot of upward and downward price movements, obviously the stock is much more volatile than a stock where the movement is relatively even. However, if you know how to read a chart properly, that is a lot more information you can gather and then these simple self-evident facts.

It is important to remember that charts can generate two types of trading information that can be used to forecast future price movements. A continuation pattern suggests that the trend being studied will continue while a reversal pattern suggests that the direction of the trend is about to reverse. Charging does not pretend to be an exact science [except to its most ardent proponents] and the use of patterns and their identification can be a difficult process which involves subjective judgment.

A fundamental principle of technical analysis is that a market’s price reflects all relevant information, so their analysis looks at the history of a security’s trading pattern rather than external drivers such as economic, fundamental and news events. Price action also tends to repeat itself because investors collectively tend toward patterned behavior – hence technicians’ focus on identifiable trends and conditions

While fundamental analysts examine earnings, dividends, new products, research and the like, technical analysts examine what investors fear or think about those developments and whether or not investors have the wherewithal to back up their opinions; these two concepts are called psych (psychology) and supply/demand. Technicians employ many techniques, one of which is the use of charts. Using charts, technical analysts seek to identify price patterns and market trends in financial markets and attempt to exploit those patterns. Technicians use various methods and tools, the study of price charts is but one. Technicians using charts search for archetypal price chart patterns, such as the well-known head and shoulders or double top/bottom reversal patterns, study technical indicators, moving averages, and look for forms such as lines of support, resistance, channels, and more obscure formations such as flags, pennants, balance days and cup and handle patterns. Technical analysts also widely use market indicators of many sorts, some of which are mathematical transformations of price, often including up and down volume, advance/decline data and other inputs. These indicators are used to help assess whether an asset is trending, and if it is, the probability of its direction and of continuation. Technicians also look for relationships between price/volume indices and market indicators. Examples include the relative strength index, and MACD. Other avenues of study include correlations between changes in options (implied volatility) and put/call ratios with price. Also important are sentiment indicators such as Put/Call ratios, bull/bear ratios, short interest, Implied Volatility, etc.
There are many techniques in technical analysis. Adherents of different techniques (for example, candlestick charting, Dow Theory, and Elliott wave theory) may ignore the other approaches, yet many traders combine elements from more than one technique. Some technical analysts use subjective judgment to decide which pattern(s) a particular instrument reflects at a given time and what the interpretation of that pattern should be. Others employ a strictly mechanical or systematic approach to pattern identification and interpretation.
Technical analysis is frequently contrasted with fundamental analysis, the study of economic factors that influence the way investors price financial markets. Technical analysis holds that prices already reflect all such trends before investors are aware of them. Uncovering those trends is what technical indicators are designed to do, imperfect as they may be. Fundamental indicators are subject to the same limitations, naturally. Some traders use technical or fundamental analysis exclusively, while others use both types to make trading decisions.

Characteristics of technical analysis

Technical analysis employs models and trading rules based on price and volume transformations, such as the relative strength index, moving averages, regressions, inter-market and intra-market price correlations, business cycles, stock market cycles or, classically, through recognition of chart patterns.
Technical analysis stands in contrast to the fundamental analysis approach to security and stock analysis. Technical analysis analyzes price, volume and other market information, whereas fundamental analysis looks at the facts of the company, market, currency or commodity. Most large brokerage, trading group, or financial institutions will typically have both a technical analysis and fundamental analysis team.
Technical analysis is widely used among traders and financial professionals and is very often used by active day traders, market makers and pit traders. In the 1960s and 1970s it was widely dismissed by academics. In a recent review, Irwin and Park reported that 56 of 95 modern studies found that it produces positive results but noted that many of the positive results were rendered dubious by issues such as data snooping, so that the evidence in support of technical analysis was inconclusive; it is still considered by many academics to be pseudoscience. Academics such as Eugene Fama say the evidence for technical analysis is sparse and is inconsistent with the weak form of the efficient-market hypothesis. Users hold that even if technical analysis cannot predict the future, it helps to identify trading opportunities.
In the foreign exchange markets, its use may be more widespread than fundamental analysis. This does not mean technical analysis is more applicable to foreign markets, but that technical analysis is more recognized as to its efficacy there than elsewhere. While some isolated studies have indicated that technical trading rules might lead to consistent returns in the period prior to 1987, most academic work has focused on the nature of the anomalous position of the foreign exchange market. It is speculated that this anomaly is due to central bank intervention, which obviously technical analysis is not designed to predict. Recent research suggests that combining various trading signals into a Combined Signal Approach may be able to increase profitability and reduce dependence on any single rule.

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02. Feb, 2012
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Stock vs Forex Market

Stock market

Investing in Stocks has been around us for hundred of years so it’s nothing new about them. Companies issue stocks to raise capital for new projects and expansion. Each share of the stock represents a partial ownership in the company. So in other words you become a co owner of the company and therefore invest in the market the company is working in.

When the company does well and makes profit, it’s value rises and therefore the value of stocks rises as they are a representation of companies value and ownership. When this happens you can either sell these stocks for a higher value or wait for even more profits if you belive that the value of the company will rise even more. Somethimes when the company is doing well and it has good profit the company will issue dividends. Dividends are in some way a payout to the stockholders from the profit that the company has made in the recent years. These is also an interesting and profitable way to make maney in stocks. Dividends can be issued once a year, twice a year or even quarterly.

Stocks are traded on Stock exchange markets. Most stocks are bought and sold through brokers (agents) who charge a commission or a fee for there services.

Forex market

Forex (FOReign EXchange market) is an inter-bank market that took shape in 1971 when global trade shifted from fixed exchange rates to floating ones. This is a set of transactions among forex market agents involving exchange of specified sums of money in a currency unit of any given nation for currency of another nation at an agreed rate as of any specified date. During exchange, the exchange rate of one currency to another currency is determined simply: by supply and demand – exchange to which both parties agree.

The scope of transactions in the global currency market is constantly growing, which is due to development of international trade and abolition of currency restrictions in many nations. Global daily conversion transactions came to $1,982 billion in mid-1998 (the London market accounted for some 32% of daily turnover; the New York market exchanged approx. 18%, and the German market, 10%). Not only the scope of transactions but also the rates that mark the market development are impressive: in 1977, the daily turnover stood at five billion U.S. dollars; it grew to 600 billion U.S. dollars over ten years – to one trillion in 1992. Speculative transactions intended to derive profit from jobbing on the exchange rate differences make up nearly 80% of total transactions. Jobbing attracts numerous participants – both financial institutions and individual investors.

Comparison

While both the forex and the stock markets deal with money, the biggest difference between the two is the sheer volume of money transacted on a daily basis as well the span of operations. The forex market deals with nearly 2 trillions of dollars which in comparison to any stock market is much larger. The players in the forex market are also different, where the money transactions are done between governments, international banks and financial institutions of different countries.

The amount of money which is bought, sold or traded in a forex market can quickly be turned into liquid cash, or better still, it is actually made into hard cash. The speed with which such transactions take place in a forex market can be really fast for any investor, irrespective of the country of his origin.

The other difference between a stock and a forex market is that stock markets operate in shares and businesses which belong to a specific country; forex markets on the other hand operate globally and can include any and every country of the world. Its span of operations is far wider. The market encompasses nearly every country of the world and deal with trading their individual currencies which has nothing to do with any specific business or corporation.

While stock markets operate only on business working days and may remain closed on bank holidays and weekends, the forex market has to consider the several time zones across which it operates. Hence the forex market is open 24 hours 7 days a week to accommodate all the countries. While one market opens another closes. Because of the difference in time zones, one country may close its market but another in another part of the world has opened its own. Thus the trading in a forex market happens on a non-stop basis.

The stock market of any country operates with the prevailing currency of that country. For instance, Japan will work with the yen and the US stock market will work with dollars, Indian stock market with Indian Rupees, etc. The forex market, on the other hand, works with many countries and trades in many currencies. These are the major differences between the stock and the forex markets.

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20. Dec, 2010