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What Are The Best Volume Indicators?

MMaboko Seabi
Maboko Seabi
12 minutes
What Are The Best Volume Indicators?

Forex volume indicators are integral tools in the world of trading, offering invaluable insights into market dynamics. Understanding the importance of them in trading cannot be overstated, as they provide basic clues about market sentiment, help in assessing the liquidity, and confirm the price. In this guide, we will explore the definition of a volume indicator, the best Forex volume indicators, and how to select the most suitable one to enhance your trading strategy.

What does Volume Mean?

The Definition of Volume

Volume refers to the total number of shares or contracts traded within a specific time frame. It is a fundamental metric used to gauge the intensity and liquidity of a market.

The Importance of Volume

Volume is of paramount importance in financial markets for several reasons:

  • Liquidity Assessment: In the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), which is one of the largest stock exchanges in the world, volume helps assess the liquidity of various securities. Liquidity is crucial for investors and traders to be able to buy and sell assets without significantly impacting their prices.
  • Market Sentiment: Volume reflects the sentiment of market participants. In South Africa, where markets can be influenced by both local and global events, understanding market sentiment through volume analysis is vital.
  • Price Confirmation: Volume often confirms price movements. Sudden price changes with high volume are more likely to be sustained trends, making it important for traders to use volume indicators to confirm the strength of price movements.
  • Risk Management: Volume analysis aids in risk management by identifying potentially risky situations. Traders can use volume to assess market stability and the likelihood of extreme price fluctuations.

The Calculation of Volume in Foreign Exchange Trading

In the Forex Market, volume is typically measured as the number of traded currency units. Due to its decentralised nature, Forex volume is often challenging to ascertain accurately. Traders frequently rely on tick volume or the number of price changes within a given period.

What does a Volume Indicator Mean?

The Definition of a Volume Indicator

A volume indicator is a technical analysis tool used to analyse trading volume patterns and trends. These indicators provide traders with insights into market dynamics.

The Importance of a Volume Indicator

Volume indicators are critical tools in financial markets for the following reasons:

  • Confirmation of Trading Signals: Volume indicators can validate trading signals generated by other technical indicators. In the markets, where market conditions can be influenced by unique factors, having confirmation through volume is crucial to reducing false signals.
  • Divergence Identification: Volume indicators, when used in conjunction with price analysis, can identify divergence, which often precedes market reversals. 
  • Adaptation to Local Market Trends: Markets may exhibit unique trends and patterns influenced by local factors. Volume indicators allow traders to adapt their strategies to these trends effectively.

Where to Search for Volume Indicators?

Traders have access to various sources where they can find volume indicators:

  • Online Trading Platforms: Many online brokers and trading platforms offer a range of best volume indicators. These platforms often provide educational resources to help traders understand how to use them effectively.
  • Technical Analysis Courses: Several institutions offer courses on technical analysis, including volume analysis. These courses can be valuable resources for traders looking to gain a deeper understanding of volume indicators.
  • Professional Traders and Forums: Engaging with the trading community, both online and offline, can provide insights into the most effective volume indicators for the local market. Experienced traders often share their knowledge and experiences.
  • Financial News and Analysis Services: Trusted financial news sources and analysis services can provide information on the best volume indicators currently being used.
  • Books and Publications: There are several books and publications on technical analysis and volume indicators that traders can refer to for guidance.

The Top Volume Indicators

Here are some of the top volume indicators employed by traders:

On-Balance Volume (OBV)

OBV is one of the best volume indicator for Day Trading that accumulates volume on up-days and subtracts it on down-days. OBV is popular for its simplicity and its ability to confirm price trends, making it a valuable tool for traders.


Money Flow Index (MFI)

MFI combines both price and volume data to assess the strength of price trends. MFI is utilised to identify overbought and oversold conditions.


Volume-Weighted Average Price (VWAP)

VWAP calculates the average price weighted by trading volume, providing insights into fair value prices. 


Accumulation/Distribution Line

This indicator measures the flow of money into or out of an asset, taking into account changes in price and volume. Traders use it to identify potential trend changes and divergence, particularly in the context of emerging market conditions.


Tick Volume

In the Forex Market, Tick Volume, or the number of price changes within a specific time frame, is a useful indicator. It helps traders gauge market activity when accurate traded volume data may be challenging to obtain.


Selecting the Best Volume Indicator

Traders have access to a wide array of volume indicators, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Carefully selecting the best volume indicator for you is key to success in the financial markets. Here's a guide on how to choose the most suitable volume indicator:

  • Understand Your Trading Goals: Determine whether you are a short-term trader looking for quick gains or a long-term investor seeking stability. Different volume indicators are more suitable for different goals.
  • Analyse the Asset: Consider the specific asset you are trading. For instance, if you're trading stocks, you might prefer indicators that are particularly effective for equities.
  • Experiment and Backtest: Don't rely on a single indicator. Traders often combine multiple indicators to get a comprehensive view of market conditions. Experiment with different indicators and backtest them to see which ones work best for you.
  • Consider Market Conditions: Choose volume indicators that can adapt to various market conditions and are robust in the face of unexpected events.
  • Education and Training: Invest time in understanding how each indicator works. Take advantage of educational resources and courses to enhance your knowledge of volume analysis.

What are Trading Volume Strategies?

Traders often employ various Trading Volume Strategies, including:

Trend Trading Volume Strategy

This strategy involves aligning trades with prevailing market trends. Traders use this approach to capitalise on extended trends driven by factors such as economic conditions, global events, or local developments. High volume confirms the strength of a trend, making it a key factor for trend traders.

Reversal Trading Volume Strategy

All markets can experience rapid shifts due to geopolitical events or economic changes. Traders utilise reversal strategies to identify potential trend reversals. They look for volume divergence or unusual spikes in trading activity as a sign of a potential market turnaround.

Breakout Trading Volume Strategy

Breakout Strategies are popular among traders looking to capture price movements following periods of consolidation. Volume is crucial in breakout trading to confirm the validity of a breakout. A breakout with high volume is considered more reliable.

What Mistakes Should You Avoid when Utilising a Volume Indicator?

When utilising volume indicators, traders should steer clear of common mistakes, including:

  • Overreliance: Avoid relying solely on volume indicators without considering other fundamental and technical factors.
  • Ignoring Local Factors: Markets can be influenced by unique local factors. Ignoring these influences and using generic trading strategies may lead to mistakes.
  • Neglecting Context: Understand that volume should be interpreted in the context of the asset and the broader market conditions. Ignoring market context can lead to inaccurate conclusions.
  • Inadequate Knowledge: Traders should have a deep understanding of the specific volume indicator they are using. Inadequate knowledge can result in misinterpretation and ineffective use of the indicator.
  • Not Combining Indicators: While volume indicators are valuable, it's often beneficial to use them in combination with other technical indicators to make more informed trading decisions.

Bottom Line and Key Takeaways

Volume indicators are invaluable tools for traders. By selecting the most suitable volume indicators and integrating them into a well-defined trading strategy, traders can make more informed decisions and increase their chances of success. The choice of a volume indicator should align with your trading goals and the asset you are trading. Experiment with different indicators and understand how they complement your strategy.

Maboko Seabi

Maboko holds a BTech in Metallurgical Engineering and has been in the financial market for over 6 years. He has experience in market analysis and systematic trading strategies.

Can volume indicators be used for long-term investments?

While volume indicators are primarily associated with short-term trading, they can also provide insights into long-term investment trends and confirm the strength of such trends.

Is there a Forex volume indicator that works better in South African markets?

The effectiveness of volume indicators is not region-specific. Traders in South Africa can use the same indicators as traders worldwide to analyse volume trends in Forex Trading.

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