Tag Archives: Patterns

It’s All About Real-Time Contextual Decision Making


You've learnt the pattern or setup. Great. But that's not trading.

Now work on the real-time contextual decision making around that pattern or setup.

Look beyond the pattern itself to the wider context.

Where is the pattern occurring within the larger timeframe market structure? What structure will suggest avoiding this particular setup? What structure might suggest caution, or reduced position sizing? What structure might suggest increased odds and the potential to really press the trade for a larger gain?

Where is the pattern occurring within time? Are there news influences which suggest passing on the trade? Are their time-of-day / week / month factors which might suggest standing aside?

Consider the behaviour of price movement – the pace, the volatility, smooth vs choppy price action.

What conditions might suggest adjustments to the default plan? All-in vs scaling in? All-out vs scaling out? Closer stops vs wider stops? Closer targets vs extended targets?

Consider the real-time decision making once in a trade.

What signs might suggest a loss of edge? How will you react to this new information?

What signs might suggest greater potential than originally perceived? How will you react to this new information?

What conditions suggest a re-entry attempt should be taken, if stopped out of the position? And how many re-entry attempts are appropriate?

Trading is not about simplistic patterns. It's about real-time contextual decision making.

If you've been on the wrong path then it's time to make a change. It's time to do the real work.

Best of luck,

Lance Beggs



Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout – 2


Last week we looked at the following chart sequence showing an obvious symmetrical triangle pattern within my higher timeframe chart.

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

See here if you missed the recent article – https://yourtradingcoach.com/trading-process-and-strategy/higher-timeframe-pattern-breakout/

I don't know if I was somehow influenced by that article. I don't usually look for patterns on the higher timeframe chart. It's primary purpose is for establishing an S/R framework.

But since putting that article together, I'm seeing them everywhere!  🙂

As I said last week… sometimes they just stand out as so obvious that you can't miss them. So I watch them for potential trade opportunity around the edges of the pattern structure. Usually for two alternatives – a breakout failure or a breakout pullback. 

So let's do one more example. A little different this time in that the breakout extends much further before commencing the pullback. The same concept applies though – take the first pullback against the edges of the structure.

Here's the higher timeframe chart…

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

Zooming in now to the Trading Timeframe chart at the time of entry.

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

Two steps:

(a) Higher Timeframe pattern

(b) Trade BPB / BOF around the edges of the structure.

It's not how I typically trade, but I expect a whole strategy could be based around the idea.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs



Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout


I don't actively seek to find patterns on my higher timeframe.

But sometimes they just stand out as so obvious that you can't miss them.

So I watch them for potential trade opportunity around the edges of the pattern structure. Usually for two alternatives – a breakout failure or a breakout pullback.

Of course, in either case the trade idea must make sense from my usual trading timeframe analysis. And also make sense in accordance with my philosophy on price movement and where & how it creates opportunity.

Keep an eye out for them. They can provide good opportunity.

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

<image: Higher Timeframe Pattern Breakout>

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs



LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit


Lower timeframe (LTF) entry patterns can also trigger exit.

Perhaps that's obvious? Perhaps not?

In any case, as I used an LTF trigger pattern for exit during the week the following thought crossed my mind – "I don't recall discussing this via the newsletter"

So here we are…

There are MANY entry trigger patterns. For those with the YTC Price Action Trader, refer to Chapter 4, pages 87-90 for a diagram summary of all the patterns I watch out for.

By far the majority of discussion with lower timeframe patterns is always with respect to entry.

So let's start with an entry example.

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit> 



The exact same trigger pattern can also be used to trigger EXIT from an earlier (opposite direction) trade.

Let's assume now that we were SHORT much earlier, trading down into the lows.

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit>

<image: LTF Entry Patterns can also trigger Exit> 


Happy trading,

Lance Beggs



Pullback Test of Short-Term Resistance


Context is far MORE IMPORTANT than the trade entry trigger.

One of the dangers that newer traders face is too much obsession with Lower Timeframe or Trading Timeframe entry trigger patterns.

I've been there myself. We all seem to get stuck there. Entry trigger patterns are exciting. They're simple to see. And most importantly, they satisfy our "need" for certainty.

And so when I post a trade with a shooting star trigger entry, or a spike & ledge, or a spring or upthrust, I get people emailing me with a dozen examples of these same trigger entry patterns that they've just found on a chart.

But typically…. they're forgetting context.

Never forget context. It comes first!

What do I mean by context?

Context means the surrounding conditions or circumstances within which the trade is occurring.

There are many ways to look at context. My preference is to consider where the trade is occurring within the Higher Timeframe S/R framework and the Trading Timeframe trend structure, plus whether or not the "behaviour of price movement" matches my future-trend projection (See YTC Price Action Trader Vol 2 Chapter 3 for the Principles of Future-Trend Direction!).

There are other ways. Some traders gain a feel for context through market profile, or intermarket correlations, or… well there are many ways.

The point is simply that a trade does not occur in isolation from the surrounding market conditions. And those conditions are important.

Let's look at a trade:  (Note: I've purposely left off the timeframes as it doesn't matter. Just think in terms of Lower, Trading and Higher Timeframes)

Lower Timeframe Chart - Nice Entry Trigger - But that's not the important part!

As you can see… it's a really nice Shooting Star pattern. But that's not the important part.

Let's look instead to see the conditions surrounding the trade.

We'll start with the Higher Timeframe Chart:


Spring the Trap


I'm not a pattern trader. I look at the internal strength and weakness within the price movement; seeking opportunity at places of traps or weakness against the bias.

But there are some patterns that are based around similar concepts, such as the Wyckoff Spring and Upthrust. If you trade patterns, these are two which you should have in your trading arsenal.

I recently received the following message from another trader, showing an excellent example of a Spring.

Trapped Traders - Spring Pattern

Let's zoom in on the image a little:

Trapped Traders - Spring Pattern

There are two absolute facts here!

First, at around 3:20am in my timezone, this was 20 minutes after my session had finished.  (I can't stay up all night!!!)

And secondly, it is a beautiful example of a spring. I immediately thought I had to share this one. Part of what appeals to me is the rather "messy" price action – it's a REAL example, not a textbook perfect example.

So let's look at the charts in a little more detail.

Higher Timeframe first in order to get a little context…


Patterns vs Context


Patterns vs Context –

A Q&A Followup to the Better than Candlestick Series

This email Q&A is with a YTC Newsletter reader, regarding the following article series:

Please review these articles if you haven’t read them already, in order to understand the following Q&A.

 Email question:

In part two you’re explaining candlestick close positions and comparisons to determine sentiment. Are d and f patterns correct? High close is more bearish than a low close? I can’t understand that unless you’re taking prior candle sentiment into it somehow.

The diagram referenced in the question:


Yes the description of sentiment is correct.

Remember, at this stage of the analysis process we’re simply observing two consecutive candles. We have yet to take the bigger picture context into consideration. So the final assessment of market sentiment could well be very different.

But let’s examine each of the two pictures (d) and (f).

Firstly (d)

Let’s number the candles 1 and 2.

Considering candle 2 only (as a single candle), we see it is a high close candle, implying bullish sentiment.

However, let’s now take the previous candle into account, to get a feel for the sentiment over the last two candles. The previous candle (candle 1) was a low close candle with large range, (ie bearish) and the current candle was only able to retrace approximately 50% of the previous bearish range.

Overall… strong bearish (candle 1) followed by weaker bullish (candle 2) combines to equal a weak-bearish sentiment (or probably more correctly the bearish side of neutral).

Now… subsequent candles may change that assessment. The price could continue higher through a high close bull candle that breaks above all previous highs. But we don’t know that. We simply are looking at the current two-candle pattern sentiment, in this case weak-bearish. And then we go on to consider the meaning of that within the wider context of the current and previous price swings, and our S/R framework.

Another way to consider it is through the process of candlestick addition. (Click here to watch a video on candlestick addition: http://youtu.be/enPN5pIeGMo )

A single candle comprising the time period covered by both candles 1 and 2, would have a red body covering the upper half of the range, with a lower tail. Still bearish, but weak-bearish.

Now (f)

This works in exactly the same way. By itself, candle 2 is bearish, but when considered as a two-candle pattern, we have a strong bullish candle, followed by a weaker bearish candle. Overall sentiment is weak-bullish (when considering this as a two-candle pattern).

The candle addition process would show a single green candle, with body covering the lower half, and an upper tail comprising approximately half. It’s still bullish in sentiment, but once again weak due to the rejection of higher prices.

Subsequent candles may amend this… but for now it’s weak-bullish.

Is this clear? If not, please let me know and I’ll try to explain in another way.

In the end though, it all comes down to context. Where the patterns are occurring within the market is a great deal more important than the patterns themselves.


Ok, thanks lance. You’ve explained that well and I get it.

But… it does seem like fine lines. Candle 2 in (d) wouldn’t have to close much higher before the single candle addition starts to look like a hammer, usually a fairly bullish sign!

Very murky biz this!


You’re right – it can be a very fine line. But remember, we’re just talking about a VERY small part of the picture here. It’s just a quick assessment of the sentiment shown by the latest two candles.

More important is the current bias we have as a result of the bigger picture (context) – the positioning of price with respect to our S/R framework, the direction of the trend, and the nature of the trend movement (slowing down, speeding up, neutral).

In analysing a two-candle pattern in isolation, it’s easy to forget that in reality (while trading) this analysis is occurring within the context of the bigger picture bias. So the difference between a neutral (perhaps slightly bearish) pattern such as shown by (d) and a neutral (but potentially bullish) pattern such as would have occurred if the second candle closed higher forming a shooting star (or hammer)… is perhaps negligible.

Example: bearish bias; downtrend which has moved into an area of support. Both patterns (d) or the more bullish variation, indicate a presence of buying. Not yet enough to break the previous high. But they show a good sign of buying, so confirm the potential for support to hold. We wait for more information, and look for a place to buy.

Example: Uptrend, currently in a normal pullback, pattern occurring after 3 down candles, with price resting on the previous swing high. Both patterns are (again) evidence of buying, and possible signs that the pullback has come to an end. Look for an entry long for continuation of the trend.

Example: Downtrend, not at S/R. Green candle shows potential start of countertrend pullback. This is a sign to watch for strength / weakness of the pullback, remaining alert for an entry short on failure of the pullback.

The same pattern can indicate potential opportunities long or short, depending on the context of where they’re occurring within the market.

Don’t get too caught up in the ‘two candle pattern’ sentiment. It’s a quick assessment, which is then used as confirmation or non-confirmation of your larger market bias. That’s all it is.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs