Finding a Trend

Hi All,

  • What would be the best time frame to spot a trend (up or down)?

  • Also, I would like to know how far back in time you will look?

For example, H1 or 4 timeframe - How many hours back in time I will check to make sure that the trend is up / down?


There’s really no one answer for any question when it comes to these markets, just opinions. So here’s mine:

It really depends on your strategy and what type of trader you are as everyone looks at trends differently. What a scalper calls a trend a swing trader might call a pullback. Some traders stick to 1 TF and only read what’s happening there. I’ve always looked at multiple TF’s and based my trend on the bigger picture (higher TF’s), going back several months.

If you are a swing trader then you might want to find the trend on the daily TF. Some people go back a few months, some go back a few years. IMO a few months is sufficient as it gives you an idea of what price has been doing recently. “Trade what you see”.

If you’re a scalper or day trader then you’re probably looking at the 1H TF to get your trend, going back 1-3 mths, then zooming out to the lower TF’s (1-15 mins) to look for entries.

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I am trading on the M5 timeframe, you suggest to look at the H1 timeframe? Not sure, in the H1 timeframe, how long do I look back within chart to find the trend?

Thanks again,

You need to find your comfort zone depending on your strategy. Are you a trend trader, SR, SD? What triggers and entry, a specific indicator or set of indicators, an MA cross, breakout of a certain pattern?

Here’s an example of what might trigger an entry when using SR zones:

Here’s 1 month using the 1H TF. Price has broken the downtrend as well as retested the SR zone. I would consider this a good setup. Now open a 5M chart to fine tune your entry & exit points:

There’s another nice SR level you can use.

That’s what I see, but true scalpers would probably zoom in much closer than this. I’m not a true scalper, I’m all about longer term price action. Another problem is the spread. You can see the spread here, which is why scalpers usually day trade only, and not during news events, and also close before the NY session finishes.

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Thanks for your reply!

I trade M5 and use only “Demand” and “Supply” levels + a 200 MA.

Thanks again,

I personaly think we should consider looking at several days to weeks back for H1 or H4 time frames.

Trend is for the most part an illusion, you have to see the market sentiment and see what positions are most popular, markets move up and down within “moving averages” as well.

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