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Technical Analysis from A to Z

Posted By Barry Ritholtz On October 5, 2005 @ 4:30 pm In Books,Technical Analysis | Comments Disabled

Given all the chatter about Technical Analysis (Real Money seems to have a debate about this erupt periodically) and yesterday’s Pru announcement [1], it was a bit ironic that I noticed this email from Stockcharts.com about a TA book:

"Technical Analysis from A to Z" [2] by Stephen B. Achelis ("every trading tool… from the Absolute Breadth Index to the Zig Zag"). Its one of the reference books I keep handy and reach for occasionally.

Stockcharts had a special on the book for $23.95 — but with shipping, it was $28.90 — it turns out to be cheaper at Amazon [2] ($27.17), thanks to their free shipping. (For more on this, see How the Internet Helps Pricing Efficiencies [3]).

Let me anticipate the next question: the other reference books within arms reach include:

Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns ( [4]Thomas Bulkowski [4]) [4]

Japanese Candlestick Charting ( [5]Steve  Nison [5]) [6]

Technical Analysis of the Financial Markets ( [6]John Murphy [6]) [6]

Since StockCharts [7] brought "Technical Analysis from A to Z" [2] to my attention, let me give them a plug:

1) Stockcharts [7] email comes out every other week (subscribe for free here [8]), and it usually has some thought provoking items. Their Stock chart technical analysis course [9]also free — is also pretty good. 

2)The best way to learn charting is to simply look at millions and millions of charts. I heartily recommend Gary B. Smith’s daily column in RealMoney [10] (I refer not to the high end email newsletter, but to the regular RM web subscription). Not so much for the trading ideas, but for the primer as to how to put together a playlist, preserve capital, measure risk versus reward, etc.

Truth be told, its the only column I never miss.

There are numerous TA books worth reading on the subject (Maybe I’ll put together a list one day) but there’s no substitute for simply reading chart after chart.

3) The StockCharts Market Summary [11] has long been a favorite of mine (also free).

4) The other free service I like is BarChart.com Sectoring by Industry Groups. [12] Not only can you see what’s moving by sector, but you can drill down into all the holdings of that industry group.

Disclosure: I’ve been using the free stockcharts stuff for years, and they recently offered me a free subscription. I’ll (eventually) check out all the advanced (subscription only) features, and let you know how I find them.

Speaking of disclosures,
in Q3 2005, you folks bought $5,032.08 of stuff through the Amazon links I posted, which earned me an Amazon credit for a grand total of $201.29 for the quarter. I used that moolah to buy more economic/market related books. They get read and written about here, which generates some more Amazon bucks, which I use to buy books which get read and written about here . . . you get the idea.

Any book you see referenced to the right has either been read — or heavily skimmed (i.e., I read half) — that I am comfortable recommending them. I have about 20 books queued up, which should keep me busy until early Spring.

Feel free to make suggestions for anything that should be on my list . . .

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URL to article: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2005/10/technical-analysis-from-a-to-z/

URLs in this post:

[1] Pru announcement: http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2005/10/prudential_kill.html

[2] "Technical Analysis from A to Z": http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0071363483/thebigpictu09-20/102-1793806-1323309

[3] How the Internet Helps Pricing Efficiencies: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2005/10/how_the_interne.html

[4] Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns (: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0471668265/thebigpictu09-20

[5] Japanese Candlestick Charting (: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0735201811/thebigpictu09-20

[6] ): http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0735200661/thebigpictu09-20

[7] StockCharts: http://www.stockcharts.com/

[8] subscribe for free here: http://stockcharts.com/corp/subscribe.html

[9] Stock chart technical analysis course: http://stockcharts.com/education/

[10] Gary B. Smith’s daily column in RealMoney: http://find.thestreet.com/cgi-bin/texis/rmauthor/?au=A0000371

[11] StockCharts Market Summary: http://stockcharts.com/def/servlet/Favorites.CServlet?obj=msummary&cmd=show,iday[Y]&disp=SXA

[12] BarChart.com Sectoring by Industry Groups.: http://www2.barchart.com/sectors.asp?base=industry

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