A Lesson in Two Ascending Triangles

Feb 21, 2008: 10:21 AM CST

The intraday price action of the DIA recently formed two back-to-back ascending triangles, which resolved nicely according to classical technical analysis. Let’s look at them:

The first triangle occurred after Wednesday’s overnight gap as price consolidated into a coil, with upper resistance coming from the declining 20 period moving average, but lower support steadily rising within the context of a developing momentum divergence.

Whatever force kept prices at the $122.80 level soon gave way and price ejected upwards, completing its measuring rule price projection target of the distance from the lower to upper consolidation trendline (purple arrow).

Price actually continued a bit higher, and then consolidated after the lunch hour to form the day’s second ascending triangle formation.

Again, the eventual resolution of the pattern achieved its measuring rule price projection target (purple arrow) and found immediate resistance at this level.

I could have drawn a third triangle throughout the 3:00 hour, with the resolution being this morning’s overnight gap, but it would have been a symmetrical triangle.

It’s often very rare to have two triangles occur in a sequence like this, and it serves for a great educational lesson.

5 Comments

5 Responses to “A Lesson in Two Ascending Triangles”

  1. jordan Says:

    Corey,
    For triangles day trades, do you wait for close of 5min bar (in this example) to confirm or you will buy on the breakout? If a breakout is not accompanied by volume, how do you reconcile? Thnx

  2. Education » A Lesson in Two Ascending Triangles Says:

    […] Afraid to Trade.com Blog – Overcoming Fears wrote an interesting post today on A Lesson in Two Ascending TrianglesHere’s a quick excerpt The intraday price action of the DIA recently formed two back-to-back ascending triangles, which resolved nicely according to classical technical analysis. Let’s look at them: The first triangle occurred after Wednesday’s overnight gap as price consolidated into a coil, with upper resistance coming from the declining 20 period moving average, but lower support steadily rising within the context of a developing momentum divergence. Whatever force kept prices at the $122.80 level soon gave […]

  3. Corey Rosenbloom Says:

    Jordan,

    Because intraday action is much more swift than daily charts, and volume readings are subject to time of day phenomena (greater at open and close, less at mid-day), volume readings must be taken into account with what time of day period we’re in. Yes, you want to see increases in volume at apex breakouts, but that doesn’t always happen as picture-perfect as we’d like.

    Also, no, I don’t wait for the close of a bar, because in this case, the close outside the second triangle would have been at the virtual end of the whole move. Not waiting will produce more whipsaws, but from my experience, intraday action (especially on the 5-minute chart that I utilize) happens so quickly and I prefer getting the trade on and jumping into a momentum move rather than trying to play perfect and miss the whole move, or wait for confirmation and also miss the move. I’ve gotten much better at taking stops if need be, and that’s allowed me to be more aggressive, which has helped.

    But it’s all about your personality and what you’re comfortable with, and the results that come from those tendencies.

  4. jordan Says:

    Thanks Corey. Yes I do agree that many times, I miss a move because of waiting for confirmation. Guess on intraday where fast action is needed, this is not recommended.

    How about applying these on daily charts? Do you look at closing price and volume confirmation?

  5. Link Love Friday | A Trade A Day Says:

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