In this strategy, the 4h chart is used as the base chart (this is where we screen for potential places on the chart where trading signals may occur) and the 1h timeframe as the signal chart, or the trade chart (where we execute orders according to this strategy).
If you choose to use a different timeframe as the base chart remember that you go one timeframe lower for the signal chart (so if 1h is the base chart then the 30m timeframe is the signal chart).
The main cornerstones of this strategy are as follows:
We need to have a trend. This strategy rests on trend behavior and without one it basically can not be used.
To determine if there is a trend or not we are going to use a set of two moving averages, out of which one is a 34 period and the other a 55 period MA. You may notice that these numbers are part of the Fibonacci sequence.
We can judge if a trend is worth trading or not by observing how the moving averages relate to price action.
Note: For this strategy feel free to experiment with different types of moving averages (like simple, exponential and weighted).
For an uptrend, the trend should meet the following conditions:
For a downtrend, the same applies just in the opposite direction:
An example of a downtrend with the moving averages is shown on the following chart.
As can be seen from this EURAUD chart, the price tends to bounce off the two moving averages. Basically, the moving averages are a support zone during uptrends and a resistance zone in downtrends.
It is around and inside of this moving average zone that the best trading opportunities for this trend trading strategy are to be found.
We are trying to profit on the swings in the direction of the trend. So, for this reason, we want to join the trend on the retracements.
An example of how an entry with this strategy would look like is shown below.
For this particular case, we would place the stop at 30% of the daily average true range below the entry point. On that day, the ATR was 72 pips for the AUDUSD pair, so 30% of 72 is 21.6 which means we would place the initial stop for this trade at 22 pips + the spread.
Stop loss rules are explained below.
Initial stop loss placement:
Take the EURUSD pair which has about 100 pips usual daily range. If you entered a trade with this strategy on EURUSD, then your stop loss would be 30% of 100 which equals 30 pips plus the spread, which is usually around 1 - 2 pips for EURUSD. So, in total the stop loss, in this case, would be 32 pips.
After you’ve entered the trade you need to manage that stop loss and trail it in order to be able to capture the maximum profit from the trend. Here is how this strategy works:
Take profit rules:
Because this is a trend trading strategy we will use a trailing stop for exiting the trade. This allows us to profit on a bigger part of the move.
There are some specific rules for this trailing stop order:
In an uptrend:
In a downtrend:
Here’s how this trailing stop looks on a chart.
The blue arrows are the starting point of the count and the line is the stop loss placement for that point in time. The numbers are an example of how to count the candles to determine the stop. You can see here how lower highs are left out until the next higher high backwards is found.
As the downtrend progresses with each new lower low, the counting for the trailing stop should re-done again and the stop moved lower.
Finally, go on and practice this strategy on a demo account first so you can fully grasp everything before going live. If you find it helpful some backtesting on past price data is a good way to learn and master this trend following strategy as well.
Related education and FX know-how:
Forex Education - Basics:
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Forex Education - Technical Analysis: