The cup component forms as a result of the buying power drying out. It doesn’t necessarily mean that sellers are stepping in either, or even if they do they lack the power to change the trend. It’s important to remember that the handle section of a Cup and Handle pattern should resemble a very narrow price range.

The ensuing bullish trend, marked by the trendline, continued into March, when a retracement appeared. This was followed immediately by another bullish thrusting lines pattern, indicating that the bullish trend was not ending. If you look at the regular cup and handle pattern, there is a distinct ‘u’ shape and downward handle, which is followed by a bullish continuation. This means the inverted cup and handle is the opposite of the regular cup and handle. Instead of a ‘u’ shape, it forms an ‘n’ shape, with the handle bending slightly upwards on the chart.

handle cup formation

If institutions are holding on to the stock, it won’t fall too far. An upward-sloping handle is flawed; it represents weak demand as new buyers move into the stock at a trickling pace. During the stock’s actual breakout, you want to see a new wave of buyers coming in at a torrid pace, not a trickling one. Draw the extension tool from the cup low to the high on the right of the cup, and then connect it down to the handle low. The one-level, or 100%, represents a conservative price target, and 1.618, or 162%, is a very aggressive target. Commodity and historical index data provided by Pinnacle Data Corporation.

Using Moving Averages To Trade The Vix

In many cases, the handle is locked within a small bearish channel on the chart. Chris Douthit, MBA, CSPO, is a former professional trader for Goldman Sachs and the founder of His work, market predictions, and options cup and handle pattern strategies approach has been featured on NASDAQ, Seeking Alpha, Marketplace, and Hackernoon. Call me crazy, but actually using the technicals right in front of my face makes far more sense than applying some universal profit target system.

Then understand the psychology behind this profitable trading pattern. At TSG, we believe the Cup and Handle is one of the most authentic continuation patterns. Unlike the bullish flag pattern, which is a continuation pattern, the Cup and Handle pattern takes Forex Club a lot of time to develop. For cup and handle continuation, look to trade with the trend, especially if the trend is strong. Since the cup and handle is inherently a bullish pattern, the basic idea is to look for low risk buying opportunities to enter.

Is cup and handle bearish?

The reverse cup and handle pattern is an upside-down cup followed by a handle and a breakout to the downside. It represents a bearish continuation pattern. The pattern is formed by a drop, a rally, then another drop back to where the rally started. A handle forms, which should be less than a third the size of the cup.

Then profit takers were worked through as the stock came up through the right side of the cup. The second time it is a lack of sellers that propels the stock upwards, as seats on the bull bus get more expensive because no one wants to give them up at that point in time. Cup and handle patterns are also traded in the forex market, especially by day traders​​. When intraday trading, cup and handles tend to perform better during active times of a specific currency pair.

Cup And Handle Pattern Trading Strategy Guide Updated

In the above chart example, you can see how the stock made a nice round cup and had a strong handle, before continuing higher. The one thing to point out is that on the breakout, the stock used a lot of gas just to work its way through the cloud. By the time the stock closed outside of the Ichimoku cloud, it was apparent that the stock’s tank was empty. What if there was another way to set your target, which can account for the specific pattern you are trading? To simply apply the same price target logic to every stock formation in the market sounds a bit off, when you think about it. Now that we have covered a short introduction to the cup and handle pattern, let’s walk through a few day trading strategies that can separate you from the crowd.

handle cup formation

The handle always shows a smaller decline from high to low; it represents a final shakeout of uncommitted holders, sending those shares into sturdier hands in the market. That recovery swing may end at the old high or exceed it by a few points and then reverse, adding downside fuel because it traps two groups of buyers. First, longs entering deep in the pattern get nervous because they were betting on a breakout Forex Club that fails. At the same time, longs chasing the breakout watch a small profit evaporate and are forced to defend positions. Both groups are now targeted for losses or reduced profits, while short sellers pat themselves on the back for a job well done. A cup and handle is a technical chart pattern that resembles a cup and handle where the cup is in the shape of a “u” and the handle has a slight downward drift.

Trading The Cup And Handle Chart Pattern

IBD Videos Get market updates, educational videos, webinars, and stock analysis. The handle should form in the upper part of the entire pattern. Greed, fear, hope, despair and other emotions drive stock prices. If the price oscillated up and down a number of times within the handle, a stop-loss might also be placed below the most recent swing low. While the price is expected to rise, that doesn’t mean it will. The price could rise a little and then fall, it could move sideways, or it could fall right after entry.

handle cup formation

However, the bearish version can form when the pattern is inverted. On forex charts, the bullish version of this exchange rate formation resembles a rounded bottom or cup on the left with a shallower handle to the right. The bottom of the cup should be clearly rounded, and V shaped bottoms typically do not qualify. As with most chart patterns, it is more important to capture the essence of the pattern than the particulars. The cup is a bowl-shaped consolidation and the handle is a short pullback followed by a breakout with expanding volume. A cup retracement of 62% may not fit the pattern requirements, but a particular stock’s pattern may still capture the essence of the Cup with Handle.

Cup And Handle Chart Pattern Explained

During 2016, Netgear stock rose from a low of $33.39 to $60.80 in a steep uptrend. From October 2016 to December 2016 it formed a cup formation (u-shape), and since December, it is now forming a handle structure (see “Gearing for a breakout,” below). The cup and handle pattern is the result of a bullish breakout. When the broad market is in a bullish trend, that makes the breakout a higher probability move.

The handle will remain close to the prior highs, which will squeeze out the short-sellers and cause new buyers to enter the market. No technical pattern works all the time, which is why a stop-loss is used to control the risk on trades that are less efficient. A cup and handle is typically considered a bullish continuation pattern. Once a cup and handle pattern forms, in order to generate a bullish trade signal, the price must break above the top of the handle that has formed.

The cup has a soft U-shape, retraces the prior move for about ⅓ and looks like a bowl. After forming the cup, price pulls back to about ⅓ of the cups advance, forming the handle. The handle is a relatively short period of consolidation.

Although the pattern formed and the price did decline, ultimately, the price did not follow through to the downside. The Big Tech share basket chart provides an example of this. Prior to the decline that started the cup and handle pattern, the price had advanced about 30% over several months. The upward momentum carried through following the cup and handle. The cup part of the pattern should be fairly shallow, with a rounded or flat “bottom” (not a V-shaped one), and ideally reach to the same price at the upper end of both sides.

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The perfect pattern would have equal highs on both sides of the cup, but this is not always the case. We always recommend you to backtest first the pattern and trade it a few times on a demo until you’re comfortable and have a good understanding of what is Cup and Handle pattern. First buy entry on the Handle breakout, the upper line that defines the Handle structure is our trigger line of the first buy order. The rounded bottom really shows the buyers are in control and thus new highs should be expected. If you have already taken a position using Strategy #1 on the pre-breakout, you can also use Strategy #2 to add more positions on the first pullback.

When the pattern is complete, a long trade could be taken when the price breaks above the handle. However, some traders make the mistake of assuming that once a U-shape forms, the price will drop to form a handle. It may not, so you should ideally avoid trading the pattern until it has fully formed, in order to confirm the trend. You could wait for the price to break above the handle to signal that the uptrend is continuing. The 60-minute cup and handle pattern offers an excellent timing tool when looking to buy a larger-scale trend that doesn’t show a low-risk entry price on the daily or weekly chart.

What is a cup without a handle called?

BEAKER. a cup (usually without a handle) a flatbottomed jar made of glass or plastic; used for chemistry.

This provides an indication that the upward price trend could continue—which in fact it does. A significant increase in volume observed after the breakout above resistance defined by the cup’s rim or neckline would help confirm the move. A stop loss order could be entered safely beneath the pattern’s neckline level, which should now provide support to the market. Profits would be taken ahead of the pattern’s measuring objective.

This is why sifting through the charts of the market’s greatest winners is time well worth spent. Gordon Scott has been an active investor and technical analyst of securities, futures, forex, and penny stocks for 20+ years. He is a member of the Investopedia Financial Review Board and the co-author of Investing to Win.

Our next strategy for the cup and handle pattern is to enter on the first pullback after the initial breakout. To learn more about the cup and handle in its many forms, go to Bullish Cup and Handle Pattern for an e-book on the topic. This e-book provides an in-depth analysis of the pattern and how you can use it to trade with greater success.

The stock should have had a previous uptrend leading into this pattern. However, there was a quick recovery and the stock traded back up within the normal handle boundaries within a week. I believe the essence of the formation remained valid after this sharp decline. As the handle began to develop, its slight downward slope, coupled with decreasing trading volume, was a big clue that this may be a minor consolidation.

However, crypto trading takes place on many different exchanges — and even off the exchange. Therefore, arriving at an accurate volume figure is extremely difficult. A major limitation to the cup and handle pattern is evidenced when applying it to small cryptocurrencies that do not have a large following.

Is it better to buy at the resistance level?

The more buying and selling that has occurred at a particular price level, the stronger the support or resistance level is likely to be. This is because traders and investors remember these price levels and are apt to use them again.

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Due to the rounded bottom of the pattern, you should use a curved drawing tool. Now, let’s revisit the same chart using the logic of selling the supply or upper resistance line on the chart. To indentify peaks and troughs, we can use a smoothing function like moving average. Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 71% of retail investor accounts lose money when spread betting and/or trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Author: Dori Zinn

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