How to read candlestick patterns like a pro trader


reading candlestick patterns on Olymp TradeWhen you begin your adventure with trading, all is new to you. And many things seem to be more complicated than they really are. It is, however, important that you know well the basics. And from this article, you will learn how to read candlestick patterns like a pro.

The basics of reading candlestick patterns

There are many different approaches to trading but reading candlestick patterns is one of the most basic ones. First, you should know that each candle on the price chart has 4 critical points. It has an opening, closing, high and low. Most often you will see red and green candles on the chart. Sometimes they are white and black. It all depends on the chart settings. But as red and green are the most popularly utilised, let’s focus on them.

Candle construction

A green candle gives information that it closes higher within a certain period of time. A green body of a candle shows its opening and closing. Then, a candle might have wicks (also known as shadows). And so the lowest point of a candle will mark its low and the highest point its high. All these are being calculated within a specific time period. If you are using a daily chart, a candle will show the opening, closing, high and low of the day. With 10 minutes chart, it will show the opening, closing, high and low within 10 minutes period.

A red bar tells us that it closes lower within a period of time. A candle high will be still its highest point and a candle low the lowest. But the opening and closing will be situated differently. A candle opens at the top of the red body and closes at the bottom.

OHLC candles
OHLC candles

Candlesticks patterns

In the beginning, you may be overwhelmed by so many kinds of candlestick patterns. You will see all these names like Hammer, Bullish Engulfing, Three White Soldiers, Shooting Star and you will think, how to learn them all? But I have good news. You really do not have to memorise all of them. Instead, you should understand what candles tell you.

The first question you should ask is where the price closes relative to the range (the distance between lows and highs). You will then know who is in control. If the price closes near the high of the range, it means the buyers are in control and they are quite powerful. If, for instance, the price closes higher within a time period (which says the buyers are in control) but the distance of the closing from the high is relatively large, the strength of the buyers is pretty weak.

Strong buyers in control vs weak buyers in control
Strong buyers in control vs weak buyers in control

The next question should be about the size of the pattern when compared to the ones that appeared earlier on the chart. The answer will tell you how big the conviction behind the move is. If you see a candle is just about the same size as the previous ones, there is no strong conviction. But when the candle is relatively big, also the conviction behind the move is immense.

Below is the image where you can see 2 candlestick patterns. Both are bullish engulfing. Note how strongly the market shot up after the second pattern. The size of the candles in the pattern itself was clearly larger than the preceding candles that day.

The size of a candlestick pattern matters
The size of a candlestick pattern matters

Summary

I believe the candlestick patterns are no more magic to you. Each candle provides information about the OHLC for a specific period of time. Then, you should just ask two questions. The first one is about the place the price closes in relation to the range and the second is about the size of the pattern in relation to the previous ones.

You may also combine candlestick patterns on various chart timeframes. Go to the higher timeframe and you will get a different view of what is going on in the market.

Now, head to the Olymp Trade demo account to practice reading the candlestick patterns. The account is completely free and you are not going to lose your money. So make good use of it and train yourself in understanding the candlestick charts.

All the best!

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