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On-Balance Volume Indicator OBV Overview and Formula

Therefore, traders should balance OBV by using lagging indicators. In intraday trading, you can spot divergences that signal the trend reversal of the daily volume. You can also use the OBV in day trading to confirm the trend continuation or the authenticity of the support and resistance levels breakouts.

  • In other words when the price went higher bulls lost their power and bears took control of the price.
  • Therefore, if volume or a volume proxy indicator is increasing while the response in price is more muted, some traders may take notice of this divergence as a clue that price may soon follow.
  • The reason is the natural volatility that may affect the indicator signals.
  • The green lines in the chart mark the support levels to the price and the open blue represents the indicator.
  • At that point, larger investors begin to sell, and smaller investors begin buying.

You see that OBV doesn’t confirm the uptrend indicated in the chart and a negative volume is spotted. The On Balance Volume is displayed at the bottom of the chart. The OBV line goes up when today’s closing price grows and goes down when yesterday’s closing price is higher than the current one. A sharp move of the indicator suggests big traders are stepping into the market by placing a significant amount of smart money.

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The same is true for options traders, as trading volume is an indicator of an option’s current interest. In fact, volume plays an important role in technical analysis and features prominently among some key technical indicators. The OBV stands for On Balance Volume – a technical indicator that measures trading volume relative to the price change, of both up days and down days.

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  • Divergence occurs when the indicator and the daily volume on the chart go in opposite directions.
  • Of course, you will have to master it over time to better distinguish institutional from the retail volume.
  • OBV capitalizes on this idea by keeping a running tally of volume when price moves up or down.
  • Thus, with a little practice, the signals it provides can be easy to spot and take action on.

Whenever the daily price of the bitcoin goes up, Then OBV increases by the bitcoin volume amount accordingly. Viktor has an MSc in Financial Markets and years of investing experience. His preferred instruments are ETFs but also maintains a portfolio of cryptocurrencies. Viktor loves to experiment with building data analysis and backtesting models in R. His expertise covers all corners of the financial industry, having worked as a consultant to big financial institutions, FinTech companies, and rising blockchain startups.

When changes in price and volume have a positive correlation, we can simply confirm a trend. OBV is an indicator which can help you to understand whether bulls are buying or bears are selling. I have Forex deposit bonus an issue with the described difference between cumulative delta and OBV in this article as it is inaccurate. In the case of the OBV, you add the up-days’ volume, while subtracting down-days’ volume.

Basic Guidelines for Using Volume

This low volume confirmation signaled to the trader that new money was not supporting this higher move in price. I also have added labels and alerts which pop up when the OBV is giving signals a trader should pay attention to. A typical trading signal is the breakout of the support or resistance line. It signals the current trend is strong, and it should continue. There is a special technical tool designed to spot divergences quickly comparing the yesterday’s closing price with the current. An essential analysis element is a comparison of the On Balance Volume line movements and the price changes for a chosen trading period’s volume.

I have applied my Better Divergence On Any Indicator logic to scan 3 different indicators and up to 6 different assets at one time. Shoutout to LonesomeTheBlue and QuantNomad for their respective work on divergence and scanner scripts. Medic trades using “Smart Money Concepts”, and Medic’s system revolves around the one taught by MentFX (i.e. Structure, Supply/ Demand Zone , and Confirmation). While this system per se doesn’t require the use of a volume indicator, Medic has come to respect the OBV and Accumulation / Distribution . The OBV Ribbon is available in many a shape and form, but Medic… John Murphy’s Technical Analysis of the Financial Markets covers it all with explanations that are simple and clear.

Formula for On-Balance Volume (OBV)

The OBV value for Day 1 would be 0 since there is no previous period to compare it to. On Day 2, the closing price was $12, and the volume was 150 shares. Technical analysts use On-Balance Volume as a way to identify price divergences or to confirm an emerging trend in asset valuations. After substantial Narrative and Numbers gains have been achieved, traders should look for areas to exit long positions once the OBV indicator flashes a trend peak signal. Favourable conditions for a short trade are apparent when prices hit new trend highs. Trading gains can, therefore, be captured as a new downtrend begins to guide the market.

That is because to keep pushing the price up, market participants require increasing enthusiasm. Recognizing trend divergences is an essential skill to possess if you want to navigate the trading world successfully. It can indicate whether the price of the instrument you’re trading is about what is security trading to reverse or continue the trend. Earlier we mentioned that traders use the OBV indicator to spot institutional and small investors’ presence. Now let’s get practical and see how you can capitalize on it. First, let’s start by saying that the OBV indicator is a cumulative indicator.

For futures and options, volume is based on how many contracts have changed hands. Traders look to volume to determine liquidity and combine changes in volume with technical indicators to make trading decisions. The Relative Strength Volume Comparison is a powerful tool that can help traders identify the current trend based on volume pressure and potential reversals.

Moving Averages: How to Use EMA Indicator Guide

As a volume-tracking indicator, the OBV comes ready to go and doesn’t require any particular adjustments. The settings are pre-defined since the on-balance volume automatically adjusts its values based on the automated calculations it makes. PrimeXBT products are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. You should consider whether you understand how these products work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. By putting these trading strategies into regular practice and using up to 1000x leverage, PrimeXBT can help a trader to grow their profits and minimize risk.

Despite being plotted on a price chart and measured numerically, the actual individual quantitative value of OBV is not relevant. The volatility of markets can affect OBV indicator performance quite much. After price breakouts, OBV can give you wrong signals about buyers/sellers power. Because OBV is a cumulative volume indicator and just one candlestick volume can considerably affect its final amount. In this example, we demonstrated how OBV confirmed the bitcoin price movement.

Gauge Trend Strength and Continuation With Rising OBV

Similarly, when price is moving but volume is low, traders may take this as an indication that the market may be ready to consolidate. The initial interpretation of the signal confirms the trend line breakout in the on balance volume window. As expected, the fast EMA 12 breaks through the slow EMA 34 downside a little later (red circle).

The red arrow marks the breakout point where the selling pressure is considered low. The on-balance volume, however, is going down indicating a negative volume flow. However, the value readings of this indicator are optional as they change based on the reference start period. Instead, traders often look for the direction of the indicator’s trendlines. The relationship that the indicator forms between price movement and volume is crucial for understanding market sentiment.