What Is a Gartley Pattern? Chart Pattern Explained and Example

What Is the Gartley Pattern?

The Gartley pattern is a harmonic chart pattern, based on Fibonacci numbers and ratios, that helps traders identify reaction highs and lows. In his book Profits in the Stock Market, H.M. Gartley laid down the foundation for harmonic chart patterns in 1935. The Gartley pattern is the most commonly used harmonic chart pattern. Larry Pesavento later applied Fibonacci ratios to the pattern in his book Fibonacci Ratios with Pattern Recognition.

Key Takeaways

  • Gartley patterns are the most common harmonic chart pattern.
  • The stop-loss point is often positioned at Point 0 or X and the take-profit is often set at point C.
  • Gartley patterns should be used in conjunction with other forms of technical analysis that can act as confirmation.

Gartley Patterns Explained

The Gartley pattern is the most common harmonic chart pattern. Harmonic patterns operate on the premise that Fibonacci sequences can be used to build geometric structures, such as breakouts and retracements, in prices. The Fibonacci ratio is common in nature and has become a popular area of focus among technical analysts that use tools like Fibonacci retracements, extensions, fans, clusters, and time zones.

Many technical analysts use the Gartley pattern in conjunction with other chart patterns or technical indicators. For example, the pattern may provide a big-picture overview of where the price is likely to go over the long term, while traders focus on executing short-term trades in the direction of the predicted trend. The breakout and breakdown price targets may also be used as support and resistance levels by traders.

The key benefit of these types of chart patterns is that they provide specific insights into both the timing and magnitude of price movements rather than just looking at one or the other.

Other popular geometric chart patterns used by traders include Elliott Waves, which makes similar predictions of trends in the future based on the appearance of the price movements and their relation to each other.

Identifying Gartley Patterns

Here's how the Gartley pattern is structured:

Gartley Pattern
Image by Julie Bang © Investopedia 2020

The Gartley pattern above shows an uptrend from point 0 to point 1 with a price reversal at point 1. Using Fibonacci ratios, the retracement between point 0 and point 2 should be 61.8%. At point 2, the price reverses again toward point 3, which should be a 38.2% retracement from point 1. At point 3, the price reverses to point 4. At point 4, the pattern is complete and buy signals are generated with an upside target that matches point 3, point 1, and a 161.8% increase from point 1 as the final price target. Oftentimes, point 0 is used as a stop loss level for the overall trade. These Fibonacci levels do not need to be exact, but the closer they are, the more reliable the pattern.

The bearish version of the Gartley pattern is simply the inverse of the bullish pattern and predicts a bearish downtrend with several price targets when the pattern reaches completion by the fourth point.

Real World Example of a Gartley Pattern

Here's an example of a Gartley pattern appearing in the AUD/USD currency pair:


In the chart above, the Gartley pattern is followed by a bullish move higher. Point X, or 0.70550 could be used as a stop-loss point for the trade. The take-profit point could be set at Point C, or about 0.71300.

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  1. H.M. Gartley. "Profits in the Stock Market." Health Research Books, 1935.

  2. Larry Pesavento and Steven Shapiro. "Fibonacci Ratios With Pattern Recognition." Traders Press, 1997.

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