double top pattern rules: What Are Double Top and Double Bottom Patterns & How Does It Work?

support level

The double top pattern is a twin-peak chart pattern representing a bearish reversal in which the price reaches the same levels twice with a small decline in between the two peaks. A double top pattern usually signals an intermediate or long-term change in trend. When identifying the pattern, traders need to understand that the peaks and troughs don’t have to form a perfect M shape for the pattern to emerge. In technical analysis, a double top is a chart pattern that consists of two swing highs with a trough in between, and the two highs should be at the same or almost the same level. Some traders confuse a double top with a double bottom formation.


The first peak is formed when the bullish trend finds resistance. The price retraces until it finds a support level, that we call the neckline. The double top is one of the most popular patterns in trading. It’s a reliable reversal pattern that can be used to enter a bearish position after a bullish trend.

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In the case of the double bottom, the stop loss order is placed somewhere below the current market price. Should the market resume the downtrend, the position will be quickly closed out. We’re all too familiar with failed double tops; every time you open a trade, there is the risk that the market will go against you. No matter how perfect your set-up looks, there’s no escape from the uncertainties of the market. While this is a profoundly convenient method, the close proximity of a target price to the entry point established this way makes it difficult to catch a significant market reversal.

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Therefore, I use this as a top , where I can place a tighter stop. Furthermore, this level is approximately the mid-point between the top and the signal line, which conforms to the other rule we have when choosing a stop loss level. In the first option, the stop-loss order is located above the second top.

Bonus: Best Timeframes to Trade Double Tops and Bottoms

Two factors that allow for analysts or traders to determine the existence of the double top pattern are volume and the time between the peaks. When looking at the volume, it is beneficial to note that the buildup of the price level reached on the first peak can be attributed to increased volume. The fall to the neckline occurring thereafter can be attributed to low volumes. The second attempt leading towards the second peak should also be on low volume levels.


This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result.

Double Top Pattern Example

Moreover, it showed that even implementing additional tools when confirming the signals will not guarantee successful trades. 20 minutes later, Google completes the minimum target of the double top pattern and we close the trade with a .49% profit. This reversal could signal an end of an uptrend or downtrend.

How accurate is double top?

Double Top Pattern (75.01%)

After an asset has reached a high price two times in a row with a small decrease in price in between the two highs, a double top has formed, which is a very bearish technical reversal pattern.

Fear emerged inside the crowd, causing a strong fall in the price. Double top and double bottom are reversal chart patterns observed in the technical analysis of financial trading markets of stocks, commodities, currencies, and other assets. In the next example using Netflix Inc. , we can see what appears to be the formation of a double top in March and April 2018. However, in this case, we see that support is never broken or even tested as the stock continues to rise along an uptrend. However, later in the chart one can see that the stock again forms what appears to be a double top in June and July.

What Is Double Top and Bottom?

Nothing contained herein is a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell futures,, or forex. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. It’s not unheard of for the second peak to fall short of the first peak either. This is a signal that buying power is drying up, and you should start looking at the volume pattern to make sure it’s matching up with price action. The purpose of this series is to educate newer traders on the basic principles and techniques of technical analysis.

double bottom formation

But, it bounced off the neckline and resumed the double top pattern rules trend. This continued only for a short while before the asset once again lost its momentum. This time, the retracement broke through the neckline which signified a more permanent reversal in the overall momentum of the asset’s value. The double bottom formation typically occurs at the end of a downward trending or declining market. The double bottom is similar to the double top, but the key difference between the two can be seen in the inverse or negative relationship in price.

You need to identify two rounded tops in order for the double top breakout to be considered tradable. The Double Top chart pattern strategy is the answer to your messy charts. Technically, the double top reversal is quite similar to the Triple Top Pattern. They are so closely related that the only difference between the two is by the number of resistance retests. After going over the reading, and video now I feel more confident to trade them. This is something I can add to my price action toolbox of trading.

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So as soon as the candle above closed , we had a confirmed topping pattern. Don’t forget to check out our previous guide on Symmetrical Triangles which is a great continuation pattern to exploit if you miss the top or the bottom of any market. Now, of course, that depending on the double top reversal structure the inverted V top will vary in size and magnitude. But the idea is that we need a quick move up followed by a quick move down to define a rounded top.

What is the profit target for double top?

The minimum profit target for the double top pattern is approximately equal to 2 or 3 x times the distance in price as measured from the double top to the neckline. If we project the same price distance 2 or 3 times more to the downside we obtain our first take profit zone for the Double Top chart pattern strategy.

How CFDs work – as well as what it’s like to trade with leverage – before risking real capital. For this reason, a demo account with us is a great tool for investors who are looking to make a transition to leveraged trading. In addition, you could get other kinds of confirmation of the reversal. Stop orders to limit the loss in case the market resumes the downtrend after a temporary advance above the neckline .

The basic rule is that a stock’s price bounces upward off a trendline support, and downward off a trendline resistance. When a trendline is broken, especially on a high volume, the gained momentum will push the stock significantly above/below the broken trendline. Other common price patterns used in technical analysis are double top, triple bottom, triple top, or head and shoulders, which all point to an upcoming price trend reversal.

These levels can be derived mathematically, but almost every charting package contains a Fibonacci tool which you can use to plot them on your chart with ease. In this case, it would take 2 days of normal adverse price action to reach the stop loss. It is, however, possible that the stop loss will be reached much earlier if the uptrend begins to recover rapidly. Forex traders usually assess the market volatility with a technical indicator called Average True Range or . The ATR shows how much the price will move during a given time frame.

  • From the first peak, the stock declined around 15% to form the trough.
  • When you’re trading this strategy, you’re likely to be trading against the long-term trend.
  • More aggressive traders will often use a retest as an opportunity to add on to their position if the volume and time patterns are also signaling a strong probability of trend reversal.
  • Notice in the illustration above that the market is now trading back below the neckline.

These patterns are often used in conjunction with other indicators since rounding patterns in general can easily lead to fakeouts or mistaking reversal trends. Traders will open a long position at the level of the second low of a double bottom and/or after a resistance breakout confirmation. E top and double bottom patterns, as well as providing a range of order execution tools for fast trading, which in turn helps you to manage risk. Just as with the double top, it is paramount to wait for the resistance breakout.

What is the most successful chart pattern?

Triangles are among the most popular chart patterns used in technical analysis since they occur frequently compared to other patterns. The three most common types of triangles are symmetrical triangles, ascending triangles, and descending triangles.

The bottom between the two tops is the signal line which is used to confirm the pattern. After creating the second top, the breakout through the signal line is the confirmation signal of the pattern. In this case, the proper moment to short MSFT based on the double top strategy is with the closing of the long bearish candle, which breaks the signal line. The time between the two peaks is also a determining factor for the existence of a double top pattern.

Where do you enter double top?

As the double top is formed at the end of an uptrend, the prior trend should be an uptrend. Traders should spot if two rounding tops are forming and also note the size of the tops. Traders should only enter the short position when the price break out from the support level or the neckline.

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