WaveTrend Oscillator

In the world of financial markets and trading, technical analysis plays a pivotal role in helping traders make informed decisions. The WaveTrend Oscillator is one of the numerous technical indicators available that is used to identify trends and potential entry and exit points in the market. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the WaveTrend Oscillator, understanding its underlying principles, its calculations, interpretation, and practical application in trading strategies.

WaveTrend Oscillator
WaveTrend Oscillator

What is the WaveTrend Oscillator?

The WaveTrend Oscillator is a popular technical analysis indicator developed by LazyBear, a prominent trader and software developer in the financial markets. It aims to provide traders with insights into the market’s current trend strength and potential reversals. This indicator combines two essential components: a trend-following tool and an overbought/oversold oscillator. By blending these elements, the WaveTrend Oscillator offers traders a comprehensive view of price momentum and trend direction.

The Calculation of WaveTrend Oscillator

Understanding how an indicator is calculated is fundamental to grasping its implications. The WaveTrend Oscillator is no exception. To calculate the WaveTrend Oscillator, several steps are involved:

  1. Calculate the True Range (TR): The True Range is the maximum of three values: the current high minus the current low, the absolute value of the current high minus the previous close, and the absolute value of the current low minus the previous close.
  2. Calculate Average True Range (ATR): The ATR is the moving average of the True Range over a specified period. Typically, a 10-day ATR is commonly used.
  3. Calculate the WaveTrend Value (WT): The WaveTrend Value is the difference between the short-term EMA (Exponential Moving Average) and the long-term EMA. The short-term EMA is based on the average of the last n/2 TR values, while the long-term EMA is based on the average of the last n TR values. “n” represents the user-defined WaveTrend period.
  4. Calculate the WaveTrend Average (WTA): The WaveTrend Average smoothens the WaveTrend Value using an EMA with a specified smoothing period. Commonly, a 9-day EMA is used.
  5. Calculate the Overbought/Oversold Levels: The WaveTrend Oscillator generates overbought and oversold levels, which are user-defined and often set at +/-1. When the indicator crosses above the overbought level, it suggests a potential sell signal. Conversely, when it crosses below the oversold level, it indicates a possible buy signal.

Interpreting the WaveTrend Oscillator

Now that we understand how the WaveTrend Oscillator is calculated let’s explore how to interpret it:

  1. Trend Identification: The WaveTrend Oscillator helps identify the market trend. When the indicator values are positive, it indicates a bullish trend, suggesting that prices are likely to move higher. Conversely, negative values imply a bearish trend, indicating potential price declines. The magnitude of the values represents the strength of the trend.
  2. Overbought and Oversold Conditions: The WaveTrend Oscillator’s overbought and oversold levels (usually at +/-1) provide insights into potential reversal points in the market. When the indicator rises above the overbought level, it suggests that the asset may be overvalued, and a bearish reversal could occur. On the other hand, when it drops below the oversold level, it indicates that the asset may be undervalued, and a bullish reversal could be imminent.
  3. Divergence: Divergence occurs when the price of an asset and the WaveTrend Oscillator move in opposite directions. Bullish divergence happens when the price makes a lower low while the oscillator forms a higher low, indicating a possible bullish reversal. Bearish divergence occurs when the price creates a higher high, but the oscillator forms a lower high, implying a potential bearish reversal.
  4. Crossovers: Traders often look for crossovers between the WaveTrend Oscillator and its signal line (the WaveTrend Average). A bullish crossover happens when the oscillator crosses above its signal line, suggesting a potential buy signal. Conversely, a bearish crossover occurs when the oscillator crosses below its signal line, indicating a potential sell signal.

Integrating the WaveTrend Oscillator into Trading Strategies

The WaveTrend Oscillator is a versatile tool that can be utilized in various trading strategies. Here are some common ways traders integrate this indicator into their approaches:

  1. Trend Following: Traders can use the WaveTrend Oscillator to confirm trends in the market. When the oscillator maintains positive values, it suggests a strong bullish trend, and traders may consider entering or holding long positions. Conversely, when the oscillator holds negative values, a strong bearish trend is indicated, and traders may consider short positions.
  2. Reversal Trading: The WaveTrend Oscillator’s overbought and oversold levels offer potential reversal signals. Traders may look for overbought conditions as opportunities to sell or take profits, expecting a bearish reversal. Similarly, oversold conditions may present buying opportunities, anticipating a bullish reversal.
  3. Confirmation with Price Patterns: Traders can combine the WaveTrend Oscillator with traditional price patterns, such as double tops and bottoms or head and shoulders patterns, to validate potential entry or exit points.
  4. Divergence Strategy: Divergence between the WaveTrend Oscillator and price action can be a strong signal for a potential trend reversal. Traders may use this setup to enter counter-trend positions.

Advantages and Limitations of the WaveTrend Oscillator

Like any technical indicator, the WaveTrend Oscillator has its strengths and limitations:


  1. Comprehensive Trend Analysis: The WaveTrend Oscillator combines trend-following and overbought/oversold analysis, providing traders with a holistic view of market conditions.
  2. Clear Entry and Exit Signals: The indicator’s overbought and oversold levels offer clear signals for potential entry and exit points.
  3. Versatility: The WaveTrend Oscillator can be used in various trading strategies and across different timeframes.
  4. Confirmation Tool: Traders often use this indicator in conjunction with other technical tools to confirm trading decisions.


  1. Whipsaw in Choppy Markets: In choppy or sideways markets, the WaveTrend Oscillator may generate false signals, leading to whipsaw trading.
  2. Lagging Indicator: Like many other technical indicators, the WaveTrend Oscillator is a lagging indicator, meaning it reacts to past price action.
  3. Dependence on User Settings: The effectiveness of the indicator is influenced by the user-defined settings (e.g., WaveTrend period, overbought/oversold levels), which may require optimization for different assets and timeframes.


The WaveTrend Oscillator is a nice technical analysis tool that provides valuable insights into trend identification, momentum, and potential reversal points. Traders can utilize this indicator to make more informed decisions when executing their trading strategies. However, it is crucial to remember that no single indicator can guarantee consistent profits in the financial markets. Therefore, combining the WaveTrend Oscillator with other technical and fundamental analysis tools can enhance trading performance and risk management.

As with any trading tool, practice, backtesting, and continuous learning are essential to mastering the WaveTrend Oscillator and making it a valuable addition to a trader’s arsenal. Whether you are a novice or an experienced trader, the WaveTrend Oscillator can help you gain a better understanding of market dynamics and improve your overall trading proficiency.

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