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Wave Principle

The Wave Principle: Where The Rubber Hits The Road

Elliott wave analysis saw corn’s biggest moves coming

By Nico Isaac

You could be to technical analysis what tweens are to texting, and it wouldn’t make a lick of difference: You still wouldn’t necessarily be trading at your fullest potential. The reason being: Without Elliott wave in your technical analysis toolbox, it’s like looking at the world of opportunity through a narrow keyhole and ultimately missing the big picture.

The Wave Principle can help you unlock that door. Teaching you how to do it is the goal of the latest free educational report from our Club EWI resource center, titled “How the Wave Principle Can Improve Your Trading.” In this six-page article, our editorial staff reveals these (and many more) ways in which the wave model makes up for the ways ordinary technical methods fall short:

  • Technical studies can get you on board a trend, but the Wave Principle can say specifically at which point that trend has failed — namely, when prices violate critical support or resistance levels in your price charts.
  • Technical studies can identify the direction of a trend, but the Wave Principle can determine how high prices will rally or how low they will fall.
  • Technical studies can recognize the strength of a trend, but the Wave Principle can discern the maturity of one; when it’s time to take profits or raise protective stops.
  • Technical studies can recognize the strength of a trend, but the Wave Principle can discern the maturity of one; when it’s time to take profits or raise protective stops.

Now for the fun part: Putting the Wave Principle to use in the real-time action of a well known market. For this, we turn to EWI’s chief commodity analyst and long-time Futures Junctures Service editor Jeffrey Kennedy. (Note: Futures Junctures Service is a two-part package that includes Daily Futures Junctures and its long-term sister publication Monthly Futures Junctures.)

Over the last year, Jeffrey’s timely navigation of the Corn market showcases the ability of Wave analysis to identify high-probability trade set-ups. To illustrate, we’ll start with this price chart of corn since March 2009 (courtesy of ino.com) — punctuated with brief excerpts from Jeffrey’s Monthly Futures Junctures.

CBOT Corn May 2010

Below are the expanded versions of Jeffrey’s analysis:

June 2009 Monthly Futures Junctures:

“The Party’s Over In Grains: The corrective advance in corn that began in December 2008 is complete at 450 (basis July). This means that the stage is set for renewed selling that should push corn prices to below the 2008 low of 325 1/4. Moreover, considering the manner and extent of the decline since the early June top, wave patterns argue strongly that this is an intermediate tradable top.”

September 2009 Monthly Futures Junctures: Presented an updated chart that showed prices set to embark on a powerful uptrend above $4 and wrote: “After a Rally, More Decline.”

January 2010 Monthly Futures Junctures: Price chart showed wave c of a zigzag coming to an end and wrote: Wave c = .618 times wave a + wave a at $4.26.

When applied skillfully, no method gets you into a trend earlier and out of a failed move faster than the Wave Principle. Read the entire free 6-page report “How the Wave Principle Can Improve Your Trading” today.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • How the Wave Principle provides you with price targets
  • How it gives you specific “points of ruin”: At what point does a trade fail?
  • What specific trading opportunities the Wave Principle offers you
  • How to use the Wave Principle to set protective stops
  • Keep reading this free lesson now.

Nico Isaac writes for Elliott Wave International, a market forecasting and technical analysis firm.

Learn Elliott Wave Analysis — Free

Often, basics is all you need to know.

By Editorial Staff

Understand the basics of the subject matter, break it down to its smallest parts — and you’ve laid a good foundation for proper application of… well, anything, really. That’s what we had in mind when we put together our free 10-lesson online Basic Elliott Wave Tutorial, based largely on Robert Prechter’s classic “Elliott Wave Principle — Key to Market Behavior.” Here’s an excerpt:

Successful market timing depends upon learning the patterns of crowd behavior. By anticipating the crowd, you can avoid becoming a part of it. …the Wave Principle is not primarily a forecasting tool; it is a detailed description of how markets behave. In markets, progress ultimately takes the form of five waves of a specific structure.

The personality of each wave in the Elliott sequence is an integral part of the reflection of the mass psychology it embodies. The progression of mass emotions from pessimism to optimism and back again tends to follow a similar path each time around, producing similar circumstances at corresponding points in the wave structure.

These properties not only forewarn the analyst about what to expect in the next sequence but at times can help determine one’s present location in the progression of waves, when for other reasons the count is unclear or open to differing interpretations.

As waves are in the process of unfolding, there are times when several different wave counts are perfectly admissible under all known Elliott rules. It is at these junctures that knowledge of wave personality can be invaluable. If the analyst recognizes the character of a single wave, he can often correctly interpret the complexities of the larger pattern.

The following discussions relate to an underlying bull market… These observations apply in reverse when the actionary waves are downward and the reactionary waves are upward.

Idealized Elliott Wave Pattern

1) First waves — …about half of first waves are part of the “basing” process and thus tend to be heavily corrected by wave two. In contrast to the bear market rallies within the previous decline, however, this first wave rise is technically more constructive, often displaying a subtle increase in volume and breadth. Plenty of short selling is in evidence as the majority has finally become convinced that the overall trend is down. Investors have finally gotten “one more rally to sell on,” and they take advantage of it. The other half of first waves rise from either large bases formed by the previous correction, as in 1949, from downside failures, as in 1962, or from extreme compression, as in both 1962 and 1974. From such beginnings, first waves are dynamic and only moderately retraced. …

Read the rest of this 10-lesson Basic Elliott Wave Tutorial online now, free! Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • What the basic Elliott wave progression looks like
  • Difference between impulsive and corrective waves
  • How to estimate the length of waves
  • How Fibonacci numbers fit into wave analysis
  • Practical application tips for the method
  • More

Keep reading this free tutorial today.


Elliott Wave International (EWI) is the world’s largest market forecasting firm. EWI’s 20-plus analysts provide around-the-clock forecasts of every major market in the world via the internet and proprietary web systems like Reuters and Bloomberg. EWI’s educational services include conferences, workshops, webinars, video tapes, special reports, books and one of the internet’s richest free content programs, Club EWI.

Wave Principle Crash Course: There’s No Going Back

Free video tutorial available to all Club EWI members

By Nico Isaac

For over ten decades, the mainstream financial world has embraced the view that external news events drive trend changes in the markets. In less than ten minutes, EWI’s senior tutorial instructor Wayne Gorman shatters that very idea into a fine dust, swept away into thin air.

In part one of his exclusive, three-part Club EWI video series “Why Use The Wave Principle,” Wayne first assesses the pitfalls of relying on macroeconomic models to forecast; namely: “An investor is lured into the market at just the worst time, when it’s time to sell, and forced out just at the best time to buy.”

As for real world examples of this happening, Wayne spans three hundred years of financial history to reveal how the most pivotal economic, political, and environmental events failed to alter the course of their respective markets. Here, the free video includes groundbreaking charts on these (and more) well known episodes:

  • The S&P 500 and Enron from 2000-2002: The stock market ROSE and continued to proceed upward AFTER the largest US corporate scandal and bankruptcy ever (at the time).
  • The Dow Industrials and GDP quarterly data from 1970 to early 2000s: After the release of major negative GDP numbers, the market for the most part ROSE, just the opposite of what most market analysts and investors expect.
  • The Dow and profound political events over the last 80 years: In the 1930s and 1940s, a series of negative incidents — i.e. Hitler rising to power, World War II, and the Holocaust — preceded a powerful uptrend in stocks all the way into the 1960s.
  • Stock market charts of the five countries most affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami (India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand). Four out of the five ROSE after the natural disaster…

Believe it or not, we’ve only scratched the surface. In his myth-busting, free video “Why Use the Wave Principle,” Wayne Gorman presents a total of 40 charts that capture failed fundamental analysis of the world’s leading financial markets. Wayne recalls this expression from a famous, Nobel Prize winning economist:

“Economic reasoning will be of no value in cases of uncertainty.”

And he offers this response:

“But isn’t that what we have in financial markets: cases of uncertainty? We need a different type of reasoning, one that will help us to avoid the pitfalls shown on the previous charts. That’s why the Wave Principle is so important. It offers a unique perspective and a market discipline of rules and guidelines that help investors avoid buying at tops and liquidating at bottoms. It helps to explain and understand trends before they happen.”

The flaw in Economic 101, cause-and-effect theory is one of the easiest things to prove. But it’s also one of the hardest things for many investors to accept. Now is the time to do so. Watch the free “Why Use the Wave Principle” video in its entirety today at absolutely no cost. Simply sign on to join the rapidly expanding Club EWI and take advantage of the amazing educational benefits membership has to offer.


Nico Isaac writes for Elliott Wave International, a market forecasting and technical analysis firm.

How the Elliott Wave Principle Can Improve Your Trading

The Wave Principle identifies trend, countertrend, maturity of a trend — and more.

By Editorial Staff
The following article is an excerpt from Elliott Wave International’s Trader’s Classroom Collection.

Every trader, every analyst and every technician has favorite techniques to use when trading. But where traditional technical studies fall short, the Wave Principle kicks in to show high probability price targets and, just as importantly, how to distinguish high probability trade setups from the ones that traders should ignore.

Where Technical Studies Fall Short
There are three categories of technical studies: trend-following indicators, oscillators and sentiment indicators. Trend-following indicators include moving averages, Moving Average Convergence-Divergence (MACD) and Directional Movement Index (ADX). A few of the more popular oscillators many traders use today are Stochastics, Rate-of-Change and the Commodity Channel Index (CCI). Sentiment indicators include Put-Call ratios and Commitment of Traders report data.

Technical studies like these do a good job of illuminating the way for traders, yet they each fall short for one major reason: they limit the scope of a trader’s understanding of current price action and how it relates to the overall picture of a market. For example, let’s say the MACD reading in XYZ stock is positive, indicating the trend is up. That’s useful information, but wouldn’t it be more useful if it could also help to answer these questions: Is this a new trend or an old trend? If the trend is up, how far will it go? Most technical studies simply don’t reveal pertinent information such as the maturity of a trend and a definable price target — but the Wave Principle does.

How Does the Wave Principle Improve Trading?
Here are five ways the Wave Principle improves trading:

1. Identifies Trend – The Wave Principle identifies the direction of the dominant trend. A five-wave advance identifies the overall trend as up. Conversely, a five-wave decline determines that the larger trend is down. Why is this information important? Because it is easier to trade in the direction of the overriding trend, since it is the path of least resistance and undoubtedly explains the saying, “the trend is your friend.” Simply put, the probability of a successful commodity trade is much greater if a trader is long Soybeans when the other grains are rallying.

2. Identifies Countertrend – The Wave Principle also identifies countertrend moves. The three-wave pattern is a corrective response to the preceding impulse wave. Knowing that a recent move in price is merely a correction within a larger trending market is especially important for traders, because corrections are opportunities for traders to position themselves in the direction of the larger trend of a market.

3. Determines Maturity of a Trend – As Elliott observed, wave patterns form larger and smaller versions of themselves. This repetition in form means that price activity is fractal, as illustrated in Figure 1. Wave (1) subdivides into five small waves, yet is part of a larger five-wave pattern. How is this information useful? It helps traders recognize the maturity of a trend. If prices are advancing in wave 5 of a five-wave advance for example, and wave 5 has already completed three or four smaller waves, a trader knows this is not the time to add long positions. Instead, it may be time to take profits or at least to raise protective stops.

Since the Wave Principle identifies trend, countertrend, and the maturity of a trend, it’s no surprise that the Wave Principle also signals the return of the dominant trend. Once a countertrend move unfolds in three waves (A-B-C), this structure can signal the point where the dominant trend has resumed, namely, once price action exceeds the extreme of wave B. Knowing precisely when a trend has resumed brings an added benefit: It increases the probability of a successful trade, which is further enhanced when accompanied by traditional technical studies.

Read the rest of this 5-page Trader’s Classroom Collection lesson now, free! Learn more here.Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • How the Wave Principle provides you with price targets
  • How it gives you specific “points of ruin”: At what point does a trade fail?
  • What specific trading opportunities the Wave Principle offers you
  • How to use the Wave Principle to set protective stops
  • Keep reading this free lesson now.

Robert Prechter, Chartered Market Technician, is the world’s foremost expert on and proponent of the deflationary scenario. Prechter is the founder and CEO of Elliott Wave International, author of Wall Street best-sellers Conquer the Crash and Elliott Wave Principle and editor of The Elliott Wave Theorist monthly market letter since 1979.