Mark Douglas on Chart Patterns

We can use all the various tools to analyze the market’s behavior and find the patterns that represent the best edges, and from an analytical perspective, these patterns can appear to be precisely the same in every respect, both mathematically and visually. But, if the consistency of the group of traders who are creating the pattern “now” is different by even one person from the group that created the pattern in the past, then the outcome of the current pattern has the potential to be different from the past pattern.

It takes only one trader, somewhere in the world, with a different belief about the future to change the outcome of any particular market pattern and negate the edge that pattern represents.


The most fundamental characteristic of the market’s behavior is that each “now moment” market situation, each “now moment” behavior pattern, and each “now moment” edge is always a unique occurrence with its own outcome, independent of all others. Uniqueness implies that anything can happen, either what we know (expect or anticipate), or what we don’t know (or can’t know, unless we had extraordinary perceptual abilities). A constant flow of both known and unknown variables creates a probabilistic environment where we don’t know for certain what will happen next. This last statement may seem quite logical.


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