For those who don’t want to read
• Green in bullish (>50) zone is the most bullish.
• Red in bullish zone doesn’t necessarily mean bearish—it just means bullish strength is weakening. It may be just a pause before a reprise or exhaustion signalling a reversal—impossible to tell.
• The same in inverse applies to the bearish zone (<50).
For those who want to understand
The nine components making up Visual RSI are:
• a current timeframe RSI
• a higher timeframe RSI
• the delta between these two RSI lines
• for each of these three basic components, two independent Bollinger band: one calculated for the bullish section of the scale (>50) and a separate one calculated for the lower bearish region.
In my view, RSI’s position with regards to the centerline is much more important than its position in extreme areas. Why? Because the building block of RSI is the ratio of the averages of up/down moves during the RSI period. When the average of ups is greater, RSI is > 50. So while a rising signal starting from 20 let’s say, indicates that the rate of change is increasing, only when it crosses 50 can we say that sentiment balance has truly become bullish, and this information is more reliable than the signal being at a level corresponding to whatever estimate we make of what constitutes an extreme value. In my landscape, the general balance of a ratio provides more valuable information than the ratio’s exact value.
The idea behind the dual BBs is to provide independent tracking information for both halves of the indicator’s space, which I find more useful than the normal method of simply adding a multiple of the standard deviation on both sides of the mean. With dual BBs, the upper BB will never go lower than the indicator’s centerline, and the lower BB will never go higher. The upper BB focuses on upper-bound volatility when the signal is bearish, and the lower BB focuses on downside volatility when the signal is bearish.
The functions used to calculate the independent BBs are reusable on other signals if a centerline can be defined for them. A clamping percentage is implemented, so that when a BB line is hugging the centerline it clamps to it. This helps in providing earlier signals when they use the BB line states.
Providing context to RSI
What RSI measures indirectly is the balance in the rate of change—or the speed of price movement, but not its instant value, otherwise RSI would be even noisier. More precisely, RSI represents the relative strength of the up/down movement in the last n bars of RSI’s length, with 14 often used because that’s what Wilder proposed (Visual RSI’s defaults are 20 for the current timeframe and 40 for the higher timeframe). At every bar, a new value is added to the equation and an old value carrying equal weight is dropped, so a large dropped off value will have more impact on RSI’s value if the new bar’s move is small. This accounts for some of RSI’s speed in identifying exhaustion after important moves, but almost for some of its noise.
Visual RSI is the result of trying to drown RSI’s noise in the context of other informational streams, while simultaneously providing even faster information than RSI alone, by giving more visual weight to the delta between the current and higher timeframe RSI’s.
How to read Visual RSI
The default settings show all 9 basic components as green/red areas of intensities varying with their importance. The most intense colors are reserved for the delta RSI and the BBs have the lightest intensities. The individual lines of components are intentionally difficult to distinguish so that focus is first on the general picture, including the all-important six-state background, and then on the delta RSI.
One entry setup could be reversals in a larger trend context, so low pivots of the delta in a fully bullish context (a green background in the upper section of the indicator), and inversely, high pivots in a fully bearish context (a red background in the lower section of the indicator).
Please resist the common misconception, when interpreting RSI, that a reversal in the signal will necessarily lead to a reversal in price. Each trend has its rhythm. Only machine-generated price action can progress regularly. It’s normal for trends to take a breather for some time before they continue or reverse, as traders driving the trend experience emotional fatigue and gradual fear. RSI reversals merely signify that such a breather has occurred—nothing more. Only the larger context can provide information that can situate that pause and put more meaningful odds on it having more probability of continuing in one direction or the other. This is the reasoning behind the setup just described.
• All components can be hidden, displayed as a simple line, a uniformly colored fill, or a green/red fill (the default).
• The background can be colored using 9 different methods, including 3 six-state methods using the rising/falling BB lines of the 3 basic components. These six states allow for bullish/bearish/neutral sentiment in both the upper and lower regions of the indicator. A bearish (dark red) background in the bullish (>50) section of the indicator represents decreasing bullishness. A bearish (slightly brighter red) in the bearish (<50) section of the indicator means incresingly bearish sentiment. The six-state backgrounds allow for neutral (no color) sentiment when no compelling signs can be found to conclude anything with meaningful odds. The default background uses the six-state method on the higher timeframe RSI’s BBs because I find it the most useful, as it represents the largest—and slowest—context sentiment among all the indicator’s components.
• A thin status bar in the top part of the indicator also allows selection of the same 9 methods to color it. The default is a triple-state system using the rising/falling characteristics of the current timeframe RSI’s BBs to provide a short-term counterbalance to the long-term background.
• Three different markers can be configured using approximately 70 permutations each, each filtered by 20 different filter permutations. When modification of the relevant parameters in the script’s Settings/Settings/Parameters section is added, possibilities are almost endless. If the generated signals are then fed into the PineCoders Engine and combined with the Engine’s own options, the permutations go up another order of magnitude, and changes to any setting can be instantly evaluated using the Engine’s backtesting results.
• Five simple filters can be combined. They are additive. They include volume-related conditions and a chandelier, which I find useful because both volume and volatility (the chandelier using highs/lows and ATR) are sensible complementary sources to RSI’s momentum information. The filter’s state can be shown as a thin line at the bottom of the indicator.
• Alerts can be configured using any of the marker/filter combinations mentioned. As usual, once your markers/filters are set up the way you want, create your alert from the chart/timeframe you want the alert to run on and be sure to use the “Once Per Bar Close” triggering condition. Use an alert message that will remind you of which combination of markers were used when creating the alert.
• A plot providing entry signals for the PineCoders Backtesting & Trading Engine is supplied. It will use whichever marker/filter configuration is active to generate signals.
• All higher timeframe information is non-repainting. Higher timeframe lines can be smoothed (the default). The selection of the higher timeframe can be made using 3 different methods:
1. By steps (if current timeframe <= 1 minute: 60 min, <= 60 min: 1D, <= 6H: 3D, <= 1D: 1W, <=1W: 1M, >1W: 12M)
2. By a user-defined multiple of the current timeframe
3. Using a fixed timeframe
• Alex Orekhov aka @everget for the chandelier code.
• @RicardoSantos who through a small remark early on, unknowingly put me on the track of eliminating noise through visual crowding.
• The brilliant guys in the PineCoders Pro room for your knowledge, limitless creativity and constant companionship.
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