We’re Going To Talk Channels

Today we’re going to talk channels. No, I’m not talking ESPN, the Shopping Channel,nor the Cartoon network for that matter.If that’s what you thought I had in mind,sorry, you’re at the wrong cable company. The channels that I’m  referring to are just another price action tool forex traders use to identify areas on the forex chart to buy or sell. And  just like the  aforementioned channels, they’re fun to watch-That is if you get your trading decisions right.

So what’re we going to do?As usual, we’ll start with a definition, then we look at three types of channels, and finally, VOILA, How to trade these channels.

First and foremost:

What Are Channels?

Well, channels are areas between two parallel trend lines  recognized as defined trading zones that traders can buy or sell.  Assuming you lay out the channels properly, you should see higher highs and higher highs or lower lows forming.  And just so you know,channels are very popular price action tools with forex traders?Why?Because they’re easily recognizable with the naked eye on the forex chart, if you know what you’re looking for.

Now there are three types of forex channels we are going to be looking at. they are ascending channel, descending channel and horizontal channel. I have this gnawing feeling that some of you have already put two and two together concerning these three channels. If that’s true,then you guys are much smarter than I thought.

Anyways,first things first.

What’s an Ascending Channel?

Well the ascending channel is a bullish pattern where the price action is restricted within two parallel ascending trend lines with the price surging upward while richocheting off higher high and high low price peaks You have an extra trend line running parallel to the right hand side of the main trend line mapping the uptrend line.

Ascending channels come highly recommend because of their spot on prediction of general changes in the uptrend.  So long as prices stay within the price channel, the upward trend, led by the bulls continues. However, when prices go beyond the channel,  expect to see a strong buy or sell signal. Let’s take a look at what an ascending channel looks like.



As you  can see the ascending channel is equipped with trend lines.You have the main trend line with the parallel line keeping company. The higher highs and higher lows represent the bullish trend. Add support and resistance strategies,and you have a great opportunity to enter a trade.

How Do I Draw An Ascending Channel?

First, draw the trend line. Don’t forget that to draw  a trend line by connecting two lows. Once you take care of the trend line, draw another trend line,parallel to the first trend line. And make sure it touches the highs created by the price increase. If you’re worried about being Einstein precise when drawing the second trend line?No need.The price will penetrate it regardless of your level of precision.

When drawing the channel at the beginning of the uptrend, look out for two higher lows and one higher high. Connect the two lows with a line  and  then draw the second parallel line through the higher high. Let’s see  an illustration of the drawing.


Notice the two lower lows at the lower end of the right parallel line.  Also look out for the higher high along the left parallel line. So long as you’ve got these two scenarios,you have an ascending channel.

How Do I Trade The Ascending Channel?

Put in your trade entry when price touches the lower line(or support level).  However,to put in your sell entry,make sure the price touches the upper trend line(or resistance level.  Next, llace your stop loss on just outside the channel or just above the high of the candlestick (for a sell order) or just below the low of the candlestick (for a buy order)

Let’s see how it looks like.


As you can see, sell is indicated on the end of  upper trend line, and buy at the end of the lower trend line. You’ll be well advised to make sure both buy and sell entries are placed at the exact positions.Anything less,and guess what?Kum ba yah.

Next up is:

What’s a Descending Channel

You don’t need much rocket science to deduce that a descending channel is the complete opposite of an ascending channel. Unlike the ascending channel, the descending line’s price action si contained between two slopping(or downward)parallel lines. And just like ascending channel,  descending channels are very useful in establishing whether the short term trend in price will continue. The trend continues only if the price remains within the region defined by the channel.

However, when the price breaks out of the channel, things get real interesting. If price surges upward out of the channel, a signal to buy flashes. When prices heads for the valley outside of the channel,  you see a signal to buy. To make a long story short, if the price break out upward out of the channel, the trend is bullish.If price breaks out downwards, it’s a bearish trend. Let’s see what a descending channel looks like


As you can see,   the descending channel  is made of the two slopping parallel lines and the ensuing price action in between. The price action is considered a channel because the price is trending downwards.

I guess the question burning your minds is:

How do I Draw The Descending Channel?

Make sure you draw the channel parallel to the trend line. Of course you have to establish the downtrend first before laying out the channel. Once you’ve established the downtrend, you draw a parallel line at the same angle as the trend line.  You then move the parallel line to touch the most recent low. Please make sure you do this at the same time you draw the parallel line or your account could really suffer. I know, I know, it’s hard doing two things at the same time. But you will be the better for it. this time. Trust me. Let’s look at an illustrationdescending_channel

As you can see, the parallel line lie is drawn at the same angle at the trend line. Notice how the parallel line   touches the most recent lower  low.If you’re into trading ranges, this’ll be the perfect time to go short and put in a sell entry. Just put in your entry at the low peak.


How do I Trade The Descending Line?

It’s no different from the ascending channel. If you want to make a buy or sell entry, you make sure the price touches both trend lines. And just like the ascending channel,  you place your stop loss on just outside the channel or just above the high of the candlestick (for a sell order) or just below the low of the candlestick (for a buy order)  if it shows signs of rejection.

And last but not least:

What’s a Horizontal Channel

Just like ascending and descending channels, horizontal channels take shape through trend lines that are drawn for both high and low prices on the forex chart.  The only difference being that it is flat. The horizontal channel comes about when prices remain the same,or constant over a period of time. And when that happens, the slope of both trendlines takes on a horizontal appearance. Inevitably a horizontal channel is born.

Oh, and lest I forget. The horizontal channel trend lines represent both the support and resistance levels. If prices break out of  the resistance  level, a buy alert is generated. While a sell signal is generated when prices break out of the support level. However, a horizontal channel is not considered a trend in forex trading circles. Why? because the main players are in consolidation. They’re just taking a breather before resuming hostilities. And  the market is moving sideways.  Let’s ta look at what a horizontal channel looks like.


As you can see , the horizontal trend lines represents both the resistance and support levels. The three points along the resistance level are labels for the newly formed highs.  What you have here is major congestion going on,in that no clear trend has been established. Instead,the major players are taken a breather before  resuming their journey. I’d strongly suggest you not trade until a clear trade has been established.  Failure to  heed this warning could cause you to say” Kum ba yah anybody?”


How Do I Trade Horizontal Channel

To Sell

  • Wait until the resistance level is established at top3.
  • Once the resistance level is established at top3, you enter with a sell stop . Make sure you enter your trade on confirmation with a bearish reversal. The candlestick must close before you enter or else?guess what? Kum ba yah.
  • Place your stop loss 5-10 pips outside of resistance level. Or place your stop loss 3-5 pips outside the bearish reversal pattern.
  • Place your take profit target exactly on the support level.

If  You Want To Buy

  • Once top3 forms and price moves down to bottom3 at support level, wait for bullish reversal candlestick pattern. Then place your buy order 3-5 pips above high peak.
  • Next place your stop loss 5-10 pips outside of support level. Or you can place stop loss 3-5 pips below the low of the bullish reversal pattern.
  • Place your profit target a the price level around the support level.


If you’ve stumbled in here looking to join the forex trade bandwagon, here is what you need to do . First,  look up Why Forex Trade Is So Popular.  Next, you learn  the fundamentals of forex trading by reading  Forex Trading Basics – Top To Bottom Part I  and Forex Trading Basics – Top to Bottom Part II .Next, you need to learn how to read candlestick patterns. They are the main feature of price action analysis And you need to know what these patterns are telling you. To be able to do that read the following on Fundamentals of Reading Candlestick Patterns, Single Candlestick Patterns,  Dual Candlestick Patterns, and Triple Candlestick Patterns .    Also You Need To Know Ten Of These Candlestick Patterns . And finally If you want to give your trading skills an edge by relying on pure price action trading/analysis,  instead of fancy forex robots and fancy indicators, get started with What is Price Action Trading? 

Looking to get a leg up on price action analysis,?you need to learn How to Identify Support and Resistance Levels.  And if you want to learn how to interpret trading zones, read up on Identifying Dynamic Support and Resistance Levels. Finally you should know  How To Read Candlestick Patterns using Support and Resistance Levels.

However, if you only want to trade once a month and watch your entry rack up huge profits over a stretch  of several weeks, consult  How to Spot High Probability Trades.  And if you  are  still not sure about  price action trading, find out   Why Price Action Trading Still Rocks . Dont let me stop you from reading the other posts as well. But the  suggested posts above are the most important posts to get  you started.


That’s a wrap for “We’re Going to Talk  Channels”. Hopefully you’ve gained a painless understanding on how to trade channels. I hope you all have fun with  trading channels  whether demo or live.

Do you want me to send you the latest posts to your email address inbox?Then  subscribe to my mailing list and I’ll send my blog posts direct to your inbox. It wont cost you a penny. Till next time, take care.

P.S. If you want to know everything there is to know about price action trading  Download for free The Ultimate Guide To Price Action Trading by Rayner Teo .This brilliant ebook will change your life as a trader. It sure did mine. And if you want a place  to put your price action trading strategies into practice(Including Trading Channels), and get a simulated feel of live forex trading conditions   before trading live, open a free demo trading account with Easymarkets. And if you believe you are ready to trade live on the forex markets, open a forex trading account with EasyMarkets and get a free forex trading ebook