Isn’t it better to approach that most markets are ranging/consolidating and then look for trend confirmations? Avoiding the consolidation phase to me implies that it’s mostly a trending market out there, which isn’t the general consensus.
There are quite a few trend based indicators that help with this. A good TA book or a quick google result should reveal indicators like MAs, Bollinger bands, ADX, Aroon, Donchian channels, etc.
Chart patterns like wedges, triangles & diamonds typically indicate consolidations and possible breakouts. PA/candlestick patterns like the haramis, inside bars (ii or ioi formations) are what they are represented as on higher time frames.
There are plenty of ways to determine when markets are consolidating.
Yes they can be used. Fundamentals work on D1 timeframes plus. Smaller timeframes should be focused more around session times. Fundamentals are trickier but are easier to understand if you have an innate interest in trying to understand why markets move. Before trying to understand why elements on the economic calendar work it’ll help to undestand basic principles, like:
- Which currency pairs move during risk on/risk off behavior
- The relationship between opposing currencies like the USD and the EUR
- Concept of sibling currency pairs
- Market/Business cycles
- Commodities move foreign markets/currencies, especially those of emerging economies.
Consolidations are basically periods of low confidence or uncertainty. Certain elements are expected/priced already priced into current prices. Understanding what those elements are helps make sense of economic indicators like GDP, trade balances, PMIs, CPIs, PPIs, employment numbers, etc.