This is one of the most powerful price action trading strategies you will ever learn, it’s one of my favorite patterns. You need to learn this, and apply it.
Enjoy the lesson…
In this price action trading lesson, I am going to explain how to use the 50% Fibonacci retrace in conjunction with a price action reversal ‘confirmation’ signal, ideally a pin bar setup or fakey bar reversal setup.
It is a widely accepted fact among chart technicians that most major moves, and many minor ones, will eventually retrace to around the 50% level of the move. There are many reasons why these 50% retracements are so prevalent in the market, but we aren’t going to speculate on those today, because in the end it doesn’t really matter, what matters is that the 50% retrace is a very real and very useful event to be aware in the market.
I am only a fan of trading the 50% retrace off a swing low or high as long as there is a price action signal to confirm its validity; meaning, I don’t “blindly” enter only because the market has retraced to a 50% level. My trading is all about confluence and finding evidence to support the price signals on the charts.
How to find the 50% level of a move
Before we talk about trading price action signals from 50% retrace levels, we need to be clear on how exactly to draw in the 50% levels because I know from some of the emails that come in on the support line that some traders don’t really understand how to properly draw use the Fibonacci drawing tool on their Meta Trader 4 trading platform.
Quick note: I don’t use all the other Fibonacci extension levels because there are just too many of them and I don’t see the point of having so many different levels all over your charts. The 50% phenomenon has been proven across hundreds of years of technical analysis whilst the other Fib levels are much more haphazard and self-fulfilling in the sense that if you put enough lines all over your charts, some of them are going to get hit regardless of whether or not there is any significance behind them or not. I primarily only use the 50% level, but for me it is an ‘approximate’ 50% retrace and that means if a valid signal forms near the 50% level, say anywhere from a 45% retrace to a 60% retrace, I will also count that as a valid retrace and treat it the same I would as a signal exactly at the 50% level.
It really is quite simple to draw in the 50% levels, but it’s important that you understand where a move begins and where it ends, because I know some traders get confused about that. Where the move started should be an exact high or low of the move, or very close to it, this is where you first place the Fib tool, then you click and drag the other end of the Fib tool to the other end of the move; where the move terminated. Where the move started you should see the “100.0” in the top right of the Fib tool and you should see the “0.0” in the bottom right of the Fib tool. This might seem confusing at first to have the 100 % level at the start of the move, but it makes perfect sense if you think about it like this: You are looking for a retracement of a move, so by the time the move is finished and the market starts retracing, it is moving back toward the origin of the move and if it were to retrace back up or down on the whole move, it would then have retraced 100% of the move. See the chart below for more help:
In the example below, we are looking how to properly apply the Fibonacci tool to find the 50% retrace level of a major down move in the EURUSD pair:
How to trade price action signals from 50% retrace levels
When you have a price action signal present on the daily chart, you then match up the fib 50% retracement level if there is one present (see chart example below), if the price action candlestick signal matches up with the 50% swing retracement level then you’re good to go and potentially have a valid trade. If you can also find a relevant horizontal level to match up here, its a ‘double whammy’ of confluence (a reason to get excited).
The process of trading the 50% retrace is simple, below is one example of a recent trade on the AUDUSD pair:
After finding the potential trade signal, decide to enter at market prices, or wait for a pull back to get your stop loss tighter to reduce overall risk. In the chart example above, given the ‘perfection’ of the setup, as prices started to move up in the correct direction, a long entry could have been taken, momentum in the correct direction is always a good sign.
These obvious and ‘perfect’ price action setups at a 50% retrace level can lead to huge moves on daily chart time frames and learning how to identify and trade them can give you a very potent trading tool for your price action trading toolbox.
I personally feel that when a trader looks for the price action signal first, then matches up the supporting factors (confluence) they tend to make better trades. What I am saying here is this…if you see a giant signal on the daily chart, find out what other factors are backing it up and showing supportive evidence; we won’t always be able to trade a signal, mainly because we prefer not to fight the natural trend of the market, and many times we see signals forming against the trend.
In the next chart example below, the 50% swing retrace line and price action signal both came together at one common point and showed us a nice setup here, but what you should really take away from this example is that it was in line with the general thrust of the market, notice that prior to the pull back, we saw a nice rally up, and the pull back did not exceed the 50% area , rather it rejected it strongly and has now bounced aggressively higher to the new recent highs.
In this example we can see a 50% retrace in the EURJPY and a price action buy signal that formed showing rejection of it:
I hope this article clears some confusion about Fibonacci levels. Personally, I only get a handful of these setups every month on the daily charts, but when you see these swing retracements inside a general trend movement, its wise to mark them on your charts and then look for a price action confirmation entry signal. These setups typically lead to some very significant, and potentially very profitable moves, for more information on trading price action signals from 50% retracements levels, checkout my price action course and members area.