The Top 12 Chart Patterns You MUST know to succeed in trading

If you want to be a fluent technical analyst, knowing chart patterns is something you have to master. Chart patterns (if used correctly), can produce very reliable signals and reward trader with great profits. In this article, we cover the top 12 chart patterns with example and show you how to use them and how to make money trading with them.

Head and Shoulders Pattern

Head and shoulders pattern is believed to be one of the most reliable reversal patterns. It starts after a long bullish trend when the price rises to the peak and pulls back. Shortly after, the price rises again to a significantly higher peak but declines again. Finally, the price goes up for the third time but only reaches a level of the first high. After that, it pulls back and completes the pattern which signals that an uptrend is ending and the price is about to decline.

The first and third peaks are the shoulders and the second peak is the head. The support level where the price bounces from is called a neckline and is often used as entry-level on a break.

Head and Shoulders

Inverse Head and Shoulders Pattern

As with other patterns, there is also an inverse head and shoulders which occurs after an extended downtrend and indicates that price will go up.

Inverse Head and Shoulders

You can notice on both charts that breaking off a neckline would give us a great trading opportunity.

In the second case, you could even use a neckline retest as a second entry.

Cup And Handle Patterns

A cup and handle pattern is a bullish continuation pattern. It consists of two parts - a cup and the handle. Once a cup is completed, the handle is formed at the right side of it. If it is followed by a breakout on a resistance line and traders consider it a signal for an uptrend.

The pattern can only be recognized on the long term charts because of longer time requirement of forming a pattern.

cup and handle pattern

Cup and Handle Pattern

As you can see, identifying and trading a 'Cup and Handle' pattern is nothing complicated. Once you enter the trade on a retest of resistance, you can place your stop loss below the low of a handle and let the trade do its work.

Ascending Triangle

Both ascending and descending triangles are one of the most popular patterns among traders. To really help you understand this pattern, we should take a look at it from more of a logical perspective.

The ascending triangle is formed when the price is unable to break a resistance but at the same time, it is forming higher lows.

Ascending Triangle

As you may notice on the example above, the price is bouncing from resistance but is unable to make a lower low on each bounce. This is giving us a bullish signal that a possible break is about to happen.

Ascending Triangle

Descending Triangle

Inverse to the Ascending Triangle, the Descending Triangle is visible when the market is bouncing from support but it is unable to make higher highs.

descending triangle

descending triangle

Falling Wedge

Falling wedge is a bullish reversal pattern which happens most of the time when the price is pushing lower but we can see divergence at one of our oscillators.

This means that even the price is going lower, sellers are getting exhausted and we can expect a reversal to happen soon.

Failiing Wedge

Rising Wedge

Reversal of Falling Wedge, price is pushing higher but you can find weakening clues in your oscillator.

Double Top Pattern

The double top pattern is usually made as a topping formation at the end of the trends. It is a bearish reversal pattern which is characterized by the peak which is shortly followed by the second one at the same or very similar price point.

The double top pattern is valid once the price breaks the support made bellow the highs.

We use the same term "neckline" which is also used with the Head and Shoulders Pattern.

You can either enter the trade once the neckline is broken or wait for the retest of the neckline.

double top

Double Bottom Pattern

The opposite of the Double Top is the Double Bottom pattern which is made at the bottom of the downtrend.

The Double Bottom is characterized as two bottoms at an equal or similar price level.

Same as with the Double Top pattern, you can enter either at the break of the "neckline" or its retest.

double bottom


Flags are technical patterns which can be understood as a pause in the underlying trend.

Flags are spotted as consolidation after a fast trend in the market and they signal the continuation after the breakout.

As with all chart patterns, we have a Bull and Bear flag.

Bull Flag

Bear Flag

Bear Flag


In Conclusion

Classic chart patterns are one of the oldest parts of technical analysis and they were proven many times as a functional way to help technical traders identify the next market direction.

That being said, a trader should not forget about the context and current market conditions while making decisions in trading.