V.2:6 (197-201): CORNERSTONE OF TECHNICAL ANALYSIS: The Dow Theory by Timothy A. Maguire

V.2:6 (197-201): CORNERSTONE OF TECHNICAL ANALYSIS: The Dow Theory by Timothy A. Maguire
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"The necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude, and perseverance." (Samuel Adams, 1771)

Historical Perspective

Charles Henry Dow, founder and first editor of the Wall Street Journal, laid the foundations for technical analysis of stock trends over eighty years ago. During his thirteen year tenure as editor, from 1889 to 1902, Dow based his observations of the stock market upon interactions between the market averages he is credited with inventing. Although today referred to as the granddaddy of all technical market studies, the Dow Theory began as a fragmented series of statements in the Journal, and it is apparent Dow never intended for his thoughts to become the integrated set of principles it is today.

The fact that the Dow Theory developed into the most widely publicized theory concerning stock price movements can largely be attributed to the work of two individuals, S.A. Nelson and William Peter Hamilton, in the early years of this century. Nelson was the first to coin the term "Dow Theory", in his 1903 book The ABC of Stock Speculation. In the book, Nelson-who was a close acquaintance of Charles Dow-combined the varied opinions espoused by Dow in his editorials into a reasonably concise summary of the Theory.

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