Friday 31 July 2020

Currency Strength Candlestick Chart

In my previous posts on currency strength indices I have always visualised the indicator(s) as a line chart, e.g. here. However, after some deep thought, I have now created a way to visualise this as a candlestick chart using Octave's candle function, which, by the way, was written by me. Creating the candlestick body of a currency strength index was quite straight forward - just use the previous currency strength value as the bar's open and the current currency strength value as the close. A simple plot of this, with an overlaid currency strength index line chart, is

Of course the problem with this rendering is that there are no candlestick wicks.

My solution to create the wicks is showcased by the following code snippets
retval_high_wicks( ii , 6 ) = log( str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.h ) / max( str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.o ) , str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.c ) ) ) ;
retval_low_wicks( ii , 6 ) = log( str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.l ) / min( str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.o ) , str2double( S.candles{ ii }.mid.c ) ) ) ;
[ ii , ~ , v ] = find( [ retval_high_wicks( : , [32 33 34 35 36 37].+5 ) , -1.*retval_low_wicks( : , [5 20 28].+5 ) ] ) ;
new_index_high_wicks( : , 13 ) = accumarray( ii , v , [] , @mean ) ;
[ ii , ~ , v ] = find( [ retval_low_wicks( : , [32 33 34 35 36 37].+5 ) , -1.*retval_high_wicks( : , [5 20 28].+5 ) ] ) ;
new_index_low_wicks( : , 13 ) = accumarray( ii , v , [] , @mean ) ;
The first snippet shows an additional bit of code to the code here to record the log values of highs (lows) over (under) the candlestick bodies of all relevant currencies used in creating the currency strength indices.

The second snippet shows how the wicks are created, namely by taking the mean log values of high (low) wicks indexed by e.g.
[32 33 34 35 36 37].+5 and [5 20 28].+5
columns of downloaded forex crosses.

The reasoning behind this is as follows: take, for example, the EUR_USD forex pair - the upper wicks of these bars are recorded as upper wicks for the EUR index candles and as lower wicks for the USD index candles, reflecting the fact that upper wicks in EUR_USD can be viewed as intrabar EUR strength pushing to new highs or, alternatively, USD index candle's weakness pushing to new lows which, because the USD is the quote currency of the pair, also leads to new highs in the cross. A similar, reversed logic applies to the low wicks of the cross.

Below are charts of currency strength index candles created according to this methodology
The upper pane shows GBP currency strength index candles and the lower pane the same for USD. This is basically price action for Thursday, 30th July, 2020. The green vertical lines are the London and New York opens respectively, the red vertical line is the London close and the charts end at more or less the New York close. Bars prior to the London open are obviously the overnight Asian session.

My contemporaneous volume profile chart is the upper right pane below
From these charts it is easy to discern that the upward movement of GBP_USD during the main London session was due to GBP strength, whilst after the London close the continued upward movement of GBP_USD was due to USD weakness.

However, the point of this blog post was not to pass commentary on FX price movements, but to illustrate a methodology of creating candlestick charts for currency strength indices.


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