Whipsaw

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DEFINITION of 'Whipsaw'

A condition where a security's price heads in one direction, but then is followed quickly by a movement in the opposite direction. The origins of term is derived from the push and pull action used by lumberjacks to cut wood with a type of saw with the same name.

BREAKING DOWN 'Whipsaw'

There are two types of whipsaw patterns. The first involves an upward movement in the share price, which is then followed by a drastic downward move, which causes the share's price to fall relative to its original position. The second type involves the share price to drop for a little while, and then suddenly, the price abruptly surges towards positive gains relative to the stock's original position.

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