Top positive review
Comprehensive Review of Renko Charts by L. Masonson
12 August 2019
Review by Mr. Les Masonson on Amazon.com
Prashant Shah has written a comprehensive explanation of Renko chart which complements his recent book Trading the Market The Point and Figure Way, since both books concentrate on noiseless non-time dependent one-dimensional charts. This 324-page soft coverbook measuring 9“ long x7” wide is easy to read, as the font and charts are the right side. I see too many books with charts are crunched and impossible to decipher the axes or values. Theses charts here are one-quarter to one-half a page. All charts are from TradePoint Software by Definedge Solutions the firm founded by the author. Bold printing is used for emphasizing important points, but it is very selective which is to be commended.
The book is divided into two parts. Part 1 is 232 pages and focuses on the technical analysis of Renko charts. About 54 pages are spent on reviewing reversals and pullbacks. Part 2 is 80 pages and covers trading with Renko charts including determining appropriate brick size and position sizing.
Renko means “brick” in Japanese, therefore all the charts use brinks (rectangles) instead of candles or OHLC bars, or x’s and o’s as is the case with point & figure charts. These bricks tend to eliminate insignificant price action. Renko charts smooth out the trend which makes for fewer trading decisions and fewer technical indicator signals.
One unique feature of Renko charts is that the price will always be bullish or bearish until it changes direction. For example, a $15 stock rising in price by $2 in $0.10 increments (example of a selected brick size) without a drop of $0.10 will have 20 consecutive bullish bricks, or vice versa. So overall the chart looks smoother than other chart types.
There are many charts to clarify the use of various Renko patterns, brick values and indicator formations. Renko charts use only one price to build the bricks. If each brick is $1 then price must move at least $1 before a new brick is added to the downside or upside. Any price moves less than a $1 are not plotted. Interestingly, the bricks are placed on the chart in a diagonal, rather than on top of one another.
One other option is to use a combination of high and low price to be the brick size instead of just the close. These two charts are similar to look at, but with a small difference. Short-term traders will find the highl-low brick more suitable for same-day trading since they can make decisions quicker in real-time and not wait for a closing price brick. Moreover, these bricks are more frequent on a chart than the close bricks giving more information. Shah lays out the rules for determining brick size in a clear and concise manner. One popular brick size is the ATR—14 day which considers the price volatility.
Shah spends 16-pages reviewing technical indicators on Renko charts with their unique characteristics. Moving averages, support and resistance, trend lines, relative strength index (RSI), MACD, and Bollinger Bands are reviewed with chart examples. He recommends a 40-brick ema as it gives more insight if there is a significant move.
Additionally, he suggests that 20- 40 ema plots with a crossover signal is a viable trend change indication, especially with higher brick values.
Moreover, he discusses a few unique Renko indicators such as Brick Count Indicator, Brick Zone, Breath Zone Extreme and Sector Group Breadth and Divergence. These are all explained with chart examples. Shah highly recommends using a trading journal and a trading plan with clear rules to record the details of each trade so that patterns are captured, and future trading mistakes can be tracked and eliminated with specific rules. Shah recommends using a logarithmic scale instead of arithmetic to gain a true perspective on the price move.
At the end of the book, the author includes two real-life stories of two traders who handle their trading two different ways with two different outcomes. Those stories will likely resonate with many readers. In summary, Shah provides a thorough non-complicated, but clearly written look at a chart form that is not very commonly used in the U.S compared with candlestick and OHLC bar charts. Perhaps readers of this book will decide to add this unique and interesting charting type to their trading repertoire and enjoy the benefits.