A combination of the stochastic oscillator, ATR indicator and the moving average was used in the example above to illustrate a typical swing trading strategy. The upward trend was initially identified using the 50-day moving average (price above MA line). In the case of an uptrend, traders will look to enter long positions with the old adage of ‘buy low, sell high’.
Stochastics are then used to identify entry points by looking for oversold signals highlighted by the blue rectangles on the stochastic and chart. Risk management is the final step whereby the ATR gives an indication of stop levels. The ATR figure is highlighted by the red circles. This figure represents the approximate number of pips away the stop level should be set. For example, if the ATR reads 41.8 (reflected in the last ATR reading) the trader would look to place the stop 41.8 pips away from entry. At DailyFX, we recommend trading with a positive risk-reward ratio at a minimum of 1:2. This would mean setting a take profit level (limit) at least 83.6 (41.8 x 2) pips away or further.
If the indicator can establish a time when there's an improved chance that a trend has begun, you are tilting the odds in your favour. The indication that a trend might be forming is called a breakout. A breakout is when the price moves beyond the highest high or the lowest low for a specified number of days. For example, a 20-day breakout to the upside is when the price goes above the highest high of the last 20 days.
Depicted as yellow/orange/red bars, the impact is a basic indicator of the potential move a data release might trigger on currencies. Shall a bar be red and long, market observers expect this data to have great probability to move the Forex market. Shall this bar be yellow and short, the probability is viewed as low. In orange, we’re just in between.
Trading foreign exchange on margin carries a high level of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. The high degree of leverage can work against you as well as for you. Before deciding to trade foreign exchange you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience and risk appetite. The possibility exists that you could sustain a loss of some or all of your initial investment and therefore you should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose. You should be aware of all the risks associated with foreign exchange trading and seek advice from an independent financial advisor if you have any doubts.