Tag Archives: Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend


The YTC Price Action Trader provides clear definitions for a trend – uptrend, downtrend and sideways trend.

But despite this, there will be times where price action offers something that is not so easy to read.

One of these times can be immediately following a news release:


Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

It would be great if the market was always smooth and easy to read. But it's not.

And that's fine.

The plan at times like this is simple:

  • WAIT until it is clear.


If you wish to make "Uncertain" an additional trend type for your trading, alongside up, down and sideways trends, then by all means do so.

But either way, the plan is to wait until it is clear.

STAND ASIDE completely. At least until price reaches the edges of the structure.

What do I mean by "the edges of the structure"?

It's the place where the market has potential to transition into something that is more readable. Something that does fit more nicely into the definitions of up, down or sideways trend.

Like this:

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend

Trading an Uncertain Trend


An important news release has the potential to completely shift the sentiment of the market. Sometimes the new trend structure is not completely clear, immediately following the news release.

If the trend is uncertain, WAIT until it is clear.

STAND ASIDE completely.

At least until price reaches the edges of the structure, where the trend will (hopefully) become more readable.

The same applies at any other time, outside of news releases. If the market is choppy and you just don't have a good read, it's fine to declare it uncertain. Zoom out on the chart and identify the edges of the structure. Where are the upper and lower zones which might offer some clarity as to what is happening from then on. And stand aside until price reaches these zones.

It's ok to not know. "Uncertain" can be a valid trend type.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs



The Key to Early Recognition of Potential Change in Structure


The key to early recognition of potential change in structure is in observing and identifying "SOMETHING DIFFERENT".

I absolutely love this example which has been building now since the beginning of the year.

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure

This does not mean that the uptrend will end.

It's just a warning sign.

A clue that the sentiment driving the market prior to this date has changed in some way.

A clue that there is "potential" for a change in market structure.

And for those of you who recognise this clue, the potential to more quickly adapt to any change in structure as it happens, or even before the technical change has occurred.

(By the time I publish this article the market may well have made this change. Be sure to check out the charts if you wish to see what happens next.)

For those of you who wish to join the ranks of professional traders, this is a skill you need to build. Quickly recognising and adapting to changes in the market.

And step one in that process is early recognition of "something different".

All markets.

All timeframes.

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure

I'm just stunned by that last fact.

Skip the table below if you wish, but I personally find it amazing!  (Yep… I'm a charting nerd!)

3rd Jan: Mid-Close Range 1st Feb: Mid-Close Bull 1st Mar: Mid-Close Bull
4th Jan: High-Close Bull 2nd Feb: Low-Close Range 2nd Mar: Low-Close Range
5th Jan: High-Close Bull 3rd Feb: Mid-Close Range 3rd Mar: High-Close Range
6th Jan: High-Close Bull 6th Feb: High-Close Range 6th Mar: High-Close Range
9th Jan: High-Close Bull 7th Feb: Low-Close Bull 7th Mar: Low-Close Range
10th Jan: Mid-Close Bull 8th Feb: High-Close Range 8th Mar: Mid-Close Range
11th Jan: High-Close Range 9th Feb: High-Close Bull 9th Mar: High-Close Range
12th Jan: High-Close Range 10th Feb: High-Close Bull 10th Mar: Mid-Close Bull
13th Jan: High-Close Bull 13th Feb: High-Close Bull 13th Mar: High-Close Bull
16th Jan: Low-Close Range 14th Feb: High-Close Bull 14th Mar: High-Close Range
17th Jan: Mid-Close Bear 15th Feb: High-Close Bull 15th Mar: High-Close Bull
18th Jan: High-Close Bull 16th Feb: Mid-Close Range 16th Mar: Mid-Close Range
19th Jan: Mid-Close Range 17th Feb: High-Close Bull 17th Mar: Low-Close Range
20th Jan: Mid-Close Range 20th Feb: High-Close Bull 20th Mar: Mid-Close Range
23rd Jan: High-Close Range 21st Feb: Mid-Close Range 21st Mar: Low-Close Bear
24th Jan: High-Close Bull 22nd Feb: High-Close Range  
25th Jan: High-Close Bull 23rd Feb: Mid-Close Bear  
26th Jan: Low-Close Range 24th Feb: High-Close Range  
27th Jan: High-Close Range 27th Feb: High-Close Bull  
30th Jan: Mid-Close Bear 28th Feb: Mid-Close Range  
31st Jan: High-Close Range    


(See here if you're not familiar with this form of candlestick classification – Parts: One Two Three Four Five )

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure is in observing and identifying "SOMETHING DIFFERENT".

In a stable trend, watch for changes in volatility, or in the pace of the trend. Watch for changes in the way that price swings project beyond the previous swing high or low. Or in changes to the depth of pullbacks. Or, as in today's example, watch for a sudden and strong move counter-trend.

In a stable sideways market, watch again for sudden changes in volatility. Or sudden and dramatic increases in volume. Or (one of my favourites) watch for signs of price compression towards either the upper or lower boundaries of the range.

Something different in the way that price has been moving.

Observe it.

Question it. What could it mean? Could this in any way provide a clue to a potential change in structure?

Now… watch and adapt.

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure

The key to early recognition of potential change in structure

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs



When to Doubt a Pullback

I find the "grey areas" on a chart fascinating; the areas where our bias or premise start to show signs of breaking down and our decisions are clouded by the uncertainty that prevails at the hard right edge of our screen.

This is where real learning happens! Where your knowledge, skills and attitude are pushed just beyond their limits.

downtrend pullback


Conflicting Trends on Different Timeframes – How I Read This Chart!

Here is some great email Q&A with a YTC Newsletter reader Thomas…


Hey Lance,

Hope you are well!

Got one question for you. Looking at the below 3-minute chart when would you say we went from uptrend to downtrend? I often have a hard time reading the market after a large move in one direction which then slowly starts grinding in the opposite direction. At first I look for pullback opportunities because the trend has not technically changed, but at some point in time it becomes obvious the sentiment has changed.

Your thought much appreciated.






When Does The Trend Change?

The following chart sequence shows a great example of how I define a change of trend. The chart is a 1-minute chart of the 6B. The market and timeframe are irrelevant though. The concept applies to all markets and whichever timeframe you’re using to define the trend. I just happen to currently use the 1-minute chart.

As a background to the price action we see price in an uptrend leading into a resistance area between 1.5796 and 1.5802. Momentum clearly slows as price makes three failed attempts to breach the area (1 x test of resistance and 2 x breakout failures), before finally breaking the swing low between breakout attempts 2 and 3.

I call this break of the swing low the “objective” change of trend.



“Objective” refers to the fact that there is no discretion involved. Price traded below the swing low – there is no doubt.

However, for me, a change of objective trend definition does NOT mean a change of trend.

I define a change of trend as requiring two components:


Where to Trigger Entry into a Pullback

Some more great email Q&A…


Hi Lance,

Had a question on breakouts. I know you subscribe to the breakout, then wait for a pullback to get in. I was monitoring GBP/USD last night. I set an alarm for if price got up to resistance at 1.5080. It then broke thru. Sticking to my rules I chose not to enter but to instead wait for a pull back. Which it did after first shooting up 30 pips or so. What I wanted to know is specifically how you play breakouts. That is, after the pull back…what triggers you in? Do you wait for another breakout,….perhaps on a smaller timeframe? Or do you maybe look for a pullback to a minor support area and then enter and NOT wait for momentum to kick back in in the direction of the breakout (that is, not to take out another additional high), etc.? Things like that. Because what I am doing now will involve more and more of entering after price breaks thru. And I want to make sure I play these right without getting burnt too often on false breaks.

Very much appreciate your thoughts on this.




How I Define the Trend

I occasionally get email requests asking how I define the trend, so to save on future email replies here’s the short answer…

It seems that perhaps many people assume I use an EMA, given that the charts shown in my newsletter typically display an EMA(20). That’s not my trend definition though.

I use fairly standard definitions.

  • An uptrend is a sequence of higher swing highs and higher swing lows.
  • A downtrend is a sequence of lower swing highs and lower swing lows.

So, let’s look quickly at how this works.

A swing high is simply any turning point where rising price changes to falling price. I define a swing high (SH) as a price bar high, preceded by two lower highs (LH) and followed by two lower highs (LH), as per the following diagram:



The Swing High is candle C. All other candles reference this one.

  • Candle A has a high which is LOWER THAN candle C’s high.
  • Candle B has a high which is LOWER THAN candle C’s high.
  • Candle D has a high which is LOWER THAN candle C’s high.
  • Candle E has a high which is LOWER THAN candle C’s high.


Likewise for the swing low.


The Confusion of Trends on Different Timeframes

Here’s another great question from a YTC newsletter reader…



I have another question. Its to do with “the trend”. We are told, “the trend is our friend”. We are also told, “the trend is our friend until the end”, and we are told, “trade the trend until it bends”.

But the weekly and daily charts of a currency pair can show down-trending. Yet the hourly and 30 minute charts of the same currencies can show up-trending. So what does one do? Wait for the smaller time frames to down-trend like the weekly and daily, or seize the opportunity and trade the up-trend on the hourly and half hourly charts, which oddly enough, means trading against the trend of the higher time frames.






Trapped Traders – Part 1

Trapped traders are a simple concept you may wish to incorporate into your trading strategy, due to its potential to offer higher reliability trade setups.

These are price action based setups in which traders suddenly find themselves trapped in an undesirable situation, either:

  1. Stuck in a losing position, desperate to get out; or
  2. Stopped out of a position that then moves back in their direction, leaving them desperate to get back in.


The key in both cases is that the price action has placed traders in a position where their normal human emotional response will compel them to make a trade. We can then increase our odds by trading in the same direction as this new surge of order flow.

There are numerous ways this can present itself on a chart. We’ll look at one of my favorites today, and follow up with other trapped trader patterns in future articles.

Today’s pattern is called a 3-swing retrace.

You might also hear it referred to as an ABC correction, or an ABCD correction. It could also be considered in some cases a bull or bear flag.

We’ll start by examining a 3-swing retrace in an uptrend.


trapped traders - 3 swing retracement