The falling wedge pattern is a bullish pattern that begins wide at the top and continues to contract as prices fall. As with the rising wedges, trading falling wedge is one of the more challenging chart patterns to trade. A falling wedge pattern signals a continuation or a reversal depending on the prevailing trend. However, in most cases, the pattern indicates a reversal. In terms of its appearance, the pattern is widest at the top and becomes narrower as it moves downward, with tighter price action.

falling wedge pattern

In an ideal scenario, an extended downward trend with a definitive bottom should precede the wedge. This downward trend should prevail for a minimum of 3 months. The wedge pattern itself usually takes a quarter to half a year to form. The upper trend line should have a minimum of two high points with the second point lower than the previous and so on. Similarly, there should be at least two lows, with each low lower than the previous one.

As the pattern continues to develop, the resistance and support should appear to converge. The change in lows indicates a fall in selling pressure, and it creates a support line with a smaller slope than the resistance line. The pattern is confirmed when the resistance is broken convincingly. In some cases, traders should wait for a break above the previous high.

Another critical factor in pattern confirmation is volume. If there is no expansion in volume, then the breakout will not be convincing. The falling wedge is not an easy pattern to trade because recognizing it is difficult.

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Understanding the Falling Wedge

When a stock or index price move has fallen over time, it can create a wedge pattern as the chart begins to converge on the way down. Investors are able to look to the beginning of the descending wedge pattern and measure the peak to trough distance between support and resistance to spot the pattern. As the price continues to slide and lose momentum, buyers begin to step in and slow the rate of decline. Once the trend lines converge, this is where the price breaks through the trendline and spikes to the upside.

The falling wedge signals a bullish reversal pattern in price. It holds three common characteristics that traders should look for: First, it has converging trendlines. Next, a pattern has declining volume as the trendline progress. Finally, it’ll be preceded by a breakout through the upper trendline. What all these things come together, you have a falling wedge pattern, and a breakout to the upside should be anticipated.

The falling wedge pattern, as well as rising wedge patterns, converge to the smaller price channel. This means that the distance between where a trader would enter the trade and the price where they would open a stop loss order is relatively tight. Here it can be relatively easy to get kicked out of the trade for minimum loss, but if the stock moves to the trader’s benefit, it can result in an excellent return.

Attributes

  • Pattern type: Reversal and continuation pattern
  • Indication: Bullish
  • Breakout confirmation: The confirmation for this pattern is a close above the upper trendline drawn across the highs with above-average volume.
  • Measuring: the project target price for the falling wedge pattern is the highest high at the beginning of the formation.
  • Volume: The volume tends to decline during the formation and increase on the breakout.

Conclusion

The falling wedge pattern can be an excellent means to identify a reversal in the market. Here traders can use technical analysis to connect lower lows and lower highs to make the following wedge pattern. In addition, certain conditions must be met before the trader should act. These include understanding the volume indicator to see the volume has increased on the move up. Once the requirements are met, and there is a close above the resistance trendline, it signals the traders the look for a bullish entry point in the market. To learn more about stock chart patterns and how to take advantage of technical analysis to the fullest, be sure to check out our entire library of predictable chart patterns. These include comprehensive descriptions and images so that you can recognize important chart patterns scenarios and become a better trader.


Chris Douthit
Chris Douthit

Chris Douthit, MBA, CSPO, is a former professional trader for Goldman Sachs and the founder of OptionStrategiesInsider.com. His work, market predictions, and options strategies approach has been featured on NASDAQ, Seeking Alpha, Marketplace, and Hackernoon.