# How can Bollinger Bands be utilized to assess trends?

Utilizing Bollinger Bands to Assess Trends in Financial Markets

Bollinger Bands® has become a vital tool for technical analysts and traders in various financial markets, including stocks, futures, and currencies. Created by John Bollinger in the 1980s, these bands provide unique insights into price and volatility. While Bollinger Bands® are commonly used to identify overbought and oversold conditions, they offer much more when it comes to assessing trends in the market. In this article, we will explore how Bollinger Bands® can be effectively utilized to gauge and analyze market trends.

Understanding Bollinger Bands®

Bollinger Bands® are comprised of three lines, with the middle band, typically based on a 20-day simple moving average (SMA). The upper and lower bands are calculated by adding and subtracting twice the daily standard deviation from the middle band, respectively. These bands are created using the following formula:

• BOLU (Upper Bollinger Band) = MA(TP, n) + m * σ[TP, n]
• BOLD (Lower Bollinger Band) = MA(TP, n) - m * σ[TP, n]

Where:

• MA = Moving average
• TP (typical price) = (High + Low + Close) / 3
• n = Number of days in the smoothing period
• m = Number of standard deviations
• σ[TP, n] = Standard Deviation over the last n periods of TP

Overbought and Oversold Strategy

A common approach when using Bollinger Bands® is to identify overbought and oversold market conditions. When the price falls below the lower band, it may be considered oversold and due for a bounce. Conversely, when the price breaks above the upper band, it may be overbought and due for a pullback. This approach relies on the concept of mean reversion, assuming that prices tend to revert to the mean over time.

However, it's important to note that Bollinger Bands® may not always provide accurate buy and sell signals, particularly during strong trends. To mitigate this, traders should consider the overall price direction and only take signals that align with the trend. For instance, in a downtrend, it makes sense to take short positions when the upper band is touched, using the lower band as a potential exit point.

Create Multiple Bands for Greater Insight

One insightful way to use Bollinger Bands® for trend assessment is to create two sets of bands, one using one standard deviation and the other using two standard deviations. This approach allows traders to gain a fresh perspective on price action and trend analysis.

• When prices remain between the upper Bollinger Bands® +1 SD and +2 SD away from the mean, it suggests an uptrend, defining the "buy zone."
• If prices stay within Bollinger Bands® -1 SD and -2 SD, it indicates a downtrend, known as the "sell zone."
• If prices fluctuate between +1 SD band and -1 SD band, it signifies a neutral state or uncharted territory.

Bollinger Bands® adapt dynamically to price movements, naturally widening and narrowing with price action. This dynamic adjustment creates a highly accurate trending envelope, making it easier to assess the strength and direction of the trend.

Trend traders can effectively use Bollinger Bands® by entering long positions in the "buy zone" and staying in the trade while the bands encapsulate most of the price action of the upward move. For exiting, a rule of thumb is to close a long position when a candle on the candlestick chart turns red, with more than 75% of its body below the "buy zone." This approach helps traders avoid being prematurely "wiggled out" of a trend by minor price fluctuations.

On the other hand, fade traders can use Bollinger Bands® to identify trend exhaustion. When prices fall out of the trend channel, a fade-trader may short the next touch of the upper Bollinger Band®. Instead of placing the stop just above the swing high, which often leads to premature exits, traders can consider the width of the "no man's land" area (the distance between +1 and -1 SD) and add it to the upper band to determine a more robust stop-loss level.

Bollinger Bands Squeeze Strategy

Another strategy that can be employed with Bollinger Bands® is the squeeze strategy. A squeeze occurs when the price consolidates after a period of aggressive movement, and the upper and lower bands get closer together, indicating decreased volatility. After consolidation, when the bands start to expand, it often precedes a significant price movement. Traders can take advantage of this by entering positions when the price breaks out of the bands, with a stop-loss order placed on the opposite side of the consolidation.

Bollinger Bands® vs. Keltner Channels

It's essential to note that Bollinger Bands® and Keltner Channels are different but similar indicators. While both provide valuable insights into price and volatility, they use different methods for calculation. Bollinger Bands® are based on standard deviation, whereas Keltner Channels use the average true range (ATR). The interpretation of these indicators is generally the same, but Keltner Channels tend to generate more buy and sell signals due to their use of ATR.

Bollinger Bands® is a versatile tool for traders to assess and analyze trends in financial markets. They offer valuable insights into price movements, volatility, and trend strength. By understanding how to use multiple bands, identifying overbought and oversold conditions, and employing various strategies, traders can effectively incorporate Bollinger Bands® into their trading toolkit. Whether you are a trend trader or a fade trader, these bands provide a comprehensive framework for making informed trading decisions and navigating the complexities of the financial markets.

Tickeron's Offerings

The fundamental premise of technical analysis lies in identifying recurring price patterns and trends, which can then be used to forecast the course of upcoming market trends. Our journey commenced with the development of AI-based Engines, such as the Pattern Search EngineReal-Time Patterns, and the Trend Prediction Engine, which empower us to conduct a comprehensive analysis of market trends. We have delved into nearly all established methodologies, including price patterns, trend indicators, oscillators, and many more, by leveraging neural networks and deep historical backtests. As a consequence, we've been able to accumulate a suite of trading algorithms that collaboratively allow our AI Robots to pinpoint pivotal moments of shifts in market trends effectively.