Stocks & Commodities V. 23:7 (16-24): The Tape-Reading Edge by Thomas Carr, Ph.D.

Stocks & Commodities V. 23:7 (16-24): The Tape-Reading Edge by Thomas Carr, Ph.D.
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Stocks & Commodities V. 23:7 (16-24): The Tape-Reading Edge by Thomas Carr, Ph.D.

Tape-reading skills are a product of your intuition. Here’s how you can sharpen your intuitive power into a tremendous profit-making talent.

First, it must be said that tape-reading is a kind of luxury, at least these days. It is not necessary to tape-read to be a successful trader; tape-reading gives you an extra edge — an edge that takes your trading to the next stage of excellence. Sound tapereading skills are essential for getting the best possible entry, holding onto winning trades beyond your profit target, and are sometimes responsible for keeping you out of bad trades altogether.


Tape-reading gets its name from the old “ticker tape” machine that used to feed stock quotes to brokers before the advent of computers and LED displays. A small, glass-enclosed printing press would spit out a continuous paper ribbon, on which would be typed order size and price quotes as trades were executed. Fortunately, we no longer have to crowd around the ticker waiting anxiously for the tape to give us a quote on the stock we are interested in. We simply type the symbol into our computerized, electronic charting system and we are given a trade-by-trade, streaming “tape” of the action in real time.

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