Relative Strength Index (RSI), Technical Indicators for Forex CFD Trading

    The Relative Strength Index (RSI) is a popular momentum oscillator that measures the speed and change of price movements. It provides insights into overbought or oversold conditions in the market. Let’s dive deeper into its facets.


    Relative Strength Index (RSI)

    RSI oscillates between zero and 100 and is typically used to identify overbought or oversold conditions in a traded security. An asset is usually considered overbought when the RSI is above 70 and oversold when it’s below 30.

    How Do You Calculate RSI?

    The RSI is computed using the following steps:

    1. Determine the number of periods (commonly 14 periods).
    2. Calculate the average gain and average loss over the periods.
    3. Compute RS using the average gain and average loss.
    4. Plug RS into the primary formula to determine RSI.

    What Is the Formula for RSI?




    • Overbought/Oversold Identification:

    As mentioned, RSI values above 70 indicate overbought conditions, suggesting a potential price reversal to the downside. Conversely, values below 30 indicate oversold conditions, hinting at a possible upward price correction.


    • Divergences:

    If the price makes a new high or low but the RSI doesn't, it can signal a potential price reversal. For example, if the price makes a new high, but the RSI fails to surpass its previous high, this might indicate weakening momentum and a potential bearish reversal.

    • Swing Rejections:

    This strategy involves identifying intraday RSI swings that hint at potential reversals. For instance, if in an uptrend the RSI drops below 30 and then rises back above it, it could be a bullish sign.

    Considerations and Limitations:

    • Be Mindful of False Signals:

    Like other technical indicators, RSI can produce false signals, especially in volatile markets where prices can remain overbought or oversold for extended periods.

    • Not a Standalone Indicator:

    While RSI provides valuable insights, it's more effective when used in tandem with other technical analysis tools and indicators.

    • Adjustment for Different Markets:

    The traditional 70/30 thresholds might not always be the best for every market or situation. In strong trending markets, traders might adjust these thresholds to 80/20 to reduce false signals.

    Historical Context

    Developed by J. Welles Wilder in 1978, the RSI is not just restricted to Forex or CFD trading but is used across various financial instruments, including stocks, commodities, and indices.


    The Relative Strength Index is a versatile tool that offers traders insights into market momentum and potential reversals. As with any technical indicator, the key lies in understanding its strengths and weaknesses and combining it with other tools and techniques. In the context of Forex CFD trading, where volatility can be high, ensuring you integrate RSI insights with a robust risk management strategy is imperative.

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