The market is generally considered to follow specific cyclical patterns and trends. Successful traders and investors often try to identify these patterns to generate excess returns.
Many strategies have been developed to identify patterns or prove that there is no evidence of patterns in the data. Despite this, some argue that many such effects are simply random noise.
So it’s not possible to be sure that we’re capable of finding a ‘predictable’ pattern in the historical data.
However, even if we can’t be confident about exactly what sort of trend will appear next on their charts. It seems reasonable that we could still expect a better than average return by placing buy orders when prices are falling and sell orders when they are rising.
Volume rate of change
This strategy is a contrarian strategy because it goes against the trend rather than following it. It’s possible for traders to profit from any change in price direction, whether that means prices are going up or down.
So if there are specific, predictable patterns in the market, then looking at these trends should allow us to predict future price movements successfully.
Of course, just because something has happened before doesn’t mean it will necessarily happen again.
This ‘historical precedent’ approach has worked well for many professional traders who can quickly make decisions to take advantage of short-term opportunities.
However, implementing these strategies requires more than just following the trend – it’s also essential to consider other market factors that might influence that trend.
By using a combination of different strategies, including elements from technical analysis, fundamental analysis and momentum investing, investors can look for contrarian opportunities in which they buy when the price is going down and sell when it is going up.
When they have made a successful trade, this approach will work just as well on a chart with a downward trend as one with an upward trend, so it doesn’t matter if prices are trending upwards or downwards before you make your trades.
Of course, there is no guarantee that any particular strategy will allow you to outperform the market, but buying when the price is falling and selling when it’s rising should minimize the impact of many factors that can make investing difficult.
Buy when the world is getting worse
A contrarian strategy like this should provide a good return on investment, provided you can identify periods in which other traders are less inclined to take risks and so push down prices.
It may be because they believe the market to be overvalued, or maybe conditions will soon change, such as bad news about a stock.
So identifying such trends requires skill and insight into current market sentiment, but it takes more than just looking for falling markets.
It also means acting quickly enough to buy before other investors start pushing up prices again, so you don’t end up buying high and selling low.
Of course, contrarian investing is not easy, and you need to be careful. Markets aren’t constantly moving in the same direction as other traders expect them to, but if there’s no good reason for this and everyone thinks the market will rise (or fall), it might be time to bet against popular opinion.
Contrarians try to take advantage of what they see as excessive optimism or pessimism rather than following trends that seem logical.
After all, prices often deviate from their expected values, so there’s a chance that prices could over-react.
It isn’t a scientific approach, but even casual investors could benefit from identifying conditions in which others are less likely to act rationally.
Investing for dummies
For example, betting against the consensus could be a good strategy for investing in companies that are expected to issue terrible news since you’ll sell at higher prices before the announcement is made.
Of course, it’s essential not to fall into the trap of buying high and selling low – after all, there isn’t any point in buying stocks that other traders will expect to decline because they have fallen already.
However, identifying when price trends are driven by fear or optimism rather than fundamentals should give investors an edge, mainly if they buy quickly enough to limit their exposure.