Discovering Bollinger Bands. http://www.financial-spread-betting.com/course/bollinger-bands.html PLEASE LIKE AND SHARE THIS VIDEO SO WE CAN DO MORE! Bollinger Bands are a very useful tool invented by John Bollinger in the early 1980s. They give a frame of reference for where you expect the price to go. They are “adaptive” bands around the price chart, changing dynamically with volatility and thus providing much more information than bands at a set distance from the average price.
The centreline is a moving average, and therefore nothing special. You can expect the price candles to be above the moving average in an uptrend and below the moving average in a downtrend, as inevitably the moving average is a lagging indicator, following behind the price movement.
The bands are drawn at a constantly changing distance from the moving average, one band above and one below. The distance is conventionally taken at twice the standard deviation as this provides the most effective bands, though you can customize the indicator as you wish. It’s important to know that statistically using twice the standard deviation means that the price is between the upper band and the lower band 95% of the time.
What this means in practice is that in an uptrend you can expect to see the price between the centreline and the upper band most of the time. In fact, if you study some charts you will see that the price tends to hug the upper line in an uptrend. Similarly, in a downtrend the price will tend to drag along the lower line. When the price does breakthrough the Bollinger band, it usually returns swiftly and therefore this would not be a place to make a trade.
One way of trading on bands is to wait in an uptrend for the price to drop to the centerline, and then go long with the expectation that the price will go back up to the upper band. You can do the same thing in reverse on a downtrend.
There are many other ways to use Bollinger bands, but one of the most interesting things to notice is what happens as the width of the bands expands and contracts. As stated, this is plotted using the standard deviation, and therefore it is a measure of the volatility of the stock.
Many times you will see the bands pinching together, almost as if they are constraining the movement of the price, although of course it is actually the price’s lack of movement that reduces the size of the bands. Either way, when the bands have pinched right down it is common to see a strong move in the price, either up or down, almost as if it reaches a point where it cannot be constrained anymore.
In this situation, it is important to note that the Bollinger bands really give you no indication which way the price will break out. They simply give you a strong indication that a powerful move is about to happen. You can either try and anticipate the direction by using other indicators, or you can wait until the move is underway and trade to ride the rest of it.