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Thomas Bulkowski’s successful investment activities allowed him to retire at age 36. He is an internationally known author and trader with 30+ years of stock market experience and widely regarded as a leading expert on chart patterns. He may be reached at

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Chart Patterns: After the Buy
Getting Started in Chart Patterns, Second Edition book.
Trading Basics: Evolution of a Trader book.
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Bulkowski's Horn Tops

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Busted
Patterns
Candles Chart
Patterns
Event
Patterns
Small Patterns
Market
Industrials (^DJI):
Transports (^DJT):
Utilities (^DJU):
Nasdaq (^IXIC):
S&P500 (^GSPC):
As of 09/18/2017
22,331 63.01 0.3%
9,515 -31.61 -0.3%
739 -7.54 -1.0%
6,455 6.17 0.1%
2,504 3.64 0.1%
YTD
13.0%
5.2%
12.0%
19.9%
11.8%
Tom's Targets    Overview: 09/14/2017
22,450 or 21,500 by 10/01/2017
9,750 or 9,200 by 10/01/2017
775 or 730 by 10/01/2017
6,650 or 6,200 by 10/01/2017
2,600 or 2,425 by 10/01/2017

Written by and copyright © 2005-2017 by Thomas N. Bulkowski. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: You alone are responsible for your investment decisions. See Privacy/Disclaimer for more information.

For more information on this pattern, read Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns Second EditionEncyclopedia of Chart Patterns 2nd Edition book., pictured on the right, pages 115 to 131.

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Horn tops are H-shaped chart patterns that perform best when found on the weekly charts. The performance is very good, especially in a bull market. Horn tops tend to hide in a bear market. Discovered by Thomas Bulkowski in 1998.

Horn top chart pattern
Horn Top Chart Pattern

 

Important Bull Market Results for Horn Tops

Overall performance rank (1 is best): 4 out of 21
Break even failure rate: 7%
Average decline: 21%
Pullback rate: 33%
Percentage meeting price target: 70%

The above numbers are based on hundreds of perfect trades. See the glossary for definitions.

Horn Top Identification Guidelines

CharacteristicDiscussion
Weekly chartUse the weekly chart to locate horns.
Price trendUpward leading to the pattern.
ShapeLooks like a steer's horn, two parallel price spikes separated by a week.
SpikesThe spikes should be longer than most in the past year. They should tower over the surrounding price landscape.
UptrendThe best performing horns appear at the end of a long uptrend.
ConfirmationThe pattern confirms as valid when price closes below the lowest price in the 3-week pattern.
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Horn Top Trading Tips

Trading TacticExplanation
Measure ruleSee the Measure Rule figure to the right. Compute the height between the highest high (A) and lowest low (B) in the 3-week pattern and then multiply it by the above “percentage meeting price target.” Subtract the result from the lowest low (B) in the pattern to get a price target (C).
UptrendsThe best performing horns appear at the top of uptrends lasting several months in duration.
DowntrendsIf the horn appears near the end of a downtrend, then avoid it.
VolumeBelow average volume on both spikes suggests better postbreakout performance.
ConfirmationWait for confirmation before placing a trade.
Trend changeA horn top usually signals a trend change within 2 months.
Outside weekWhen the right horn spike (AB in the Outside Week figure to the right) is outside (a higher high and lower low) the price range of the left spike CD), performance improves.
PullbacksPullbacks hurt performance.
Horn top chart pattern measure rule
The Measure Rule

Horn top outside week

Outside Week

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Horn Top Example

Horn top chart pattern example

The above figure shows an example of a horn top chart pattern. The two spikes tower above the surrounding price landscape, the trend to the chart pattern is upward and long, and price confirms the horn top when it closes below the lowest low in the 3-week pattern. Shown on the weekly scale.

-- Thomas Bulkowski

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See Also

Written by and copyright © 2005-2017 by Thomas N. Bulkowski. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: You alone are responsible for your investment decisions. See Privacy/Disclaimer for more information. The name is Baud...James Baud.