IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/inecon/v102y2016icp188-208.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Technical trading: Is it still beating the foreign exchange market?

Author

Listed:
  • Hsu, Po-Hsuan
  • Taylor, Mark P.
  • Wang, Zigan

Abstract

We carry out a large-scale investigation of technical trading rules in the foreign exchange market, using daily data over 45years for 30 developed and emerging market currencies. Employing a stepwise test to counter data-snooping bias and examining over 21,000 technical rules, we find evidence of substantial predictability and excess profitability in both developed and emerging currencies, measured against a variety of performance metrics. We cross-validate our results using out-of-sample analysis. We find time series and cross-sectional variation in subperiods and cultural and/or geographic groups, respectively, suggesting that temporarily not-fully-rational behavior and market immaturity generate technical predictability and potential excess profitability.

Suggested Citation

  • Hsu, Po-Hsuan & Taylor, Mark P. & Wang, Zigan, 2016. "Technical trading: Is it still beating the foreign exchange market?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 188-208.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:102:y:2016:i:c:p:188-208
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2016.03.012
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022199616300472
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bajgrowicz, Pierre & Scaillet, Olivier, 2012. "Technical trading revisited: False discoveries, persistence tests, and transaction costs," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(3), pages 473-491.
    2. Sweeney, Richard J, 1986. " Beating the Foreign Exchange Market," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(1), pages 163-182, March.
    3. Michael J. Sager & Mark P. Taylor, 2006. "Under the microscope: the structure of the foreign exchange market," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(1), pages 81-95.
    4. Joseph P. Romano & Michael Wolf, 2005. "Stepwise Multiple Testing as Formalized Data Snooping," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(4), pages 1237-1282, July.
    5. Levy, Robert A, 1971. "The Predicitive Significance of Five-Point Chart Patterns," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 44(3), pages 316-323, July.
    6. Chang, P H Kevin & Osler, Carol L, 1999. "Methodical Madness: Technical Analysis and the Irrationality of Exchange-Rate Forecasts," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(458), pages 636-661, October.
    7. Melvin, Michael & Taylor, Mark P., 2009. "The crisis in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 1317-1330, December.
    8. Neely, Christopher J. & Weller, Paul A. & Ulrich, Joshua M., 2009. "The Adaptive Markets Hypothesis: Evidence from the Foreign Exchange Market," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 44(02), pages 467-488, April.
    9. Andrew W. Lo & Harry Mamaysky & Jiang Wang, 2000. "Foundations of Technical Analysis: Computational Algorithms, Statistical Inference, and Empirical Implementation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(4), pages 1705-1770, August.
    10. Robert A. Levy, 1967. "Relative Strength As A Criterion For Investment Selection," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 22(4), pages 595-610, December.
    11. Hansen, Peter Reinhard, 2005. "A Test for Superior Predictive Ability," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 23, pages 365-380, October.
    12. Kenneth A. Kavajecz, 2004. "Technical Analysis and Liquidity Provision," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 17(4), pages 1043-1071.
    13. Ryan Sullivan & Allan Timmermann & Halbert White, 1999. "Data-Snooping, Technical Trading Rule Performance, and the Bootstrap," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(5), pages 1647-1691, October.
    14. LeBaron, Blake, 1999. "Technical trading rule profitability and foreign exchange intervention," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 125-143, October.
    15. Taylor, Mark P, 1989. "Covered Interest Arbitrage and Market Turbulence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(396), pages 376-391, June.
    16. Hodrick, Robert J. & Srivastava, Sanjay, 1986. "The covariation of risk premiums and expected future spot exchange rates," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 5(1, Supple), pages 5-21, March.
    17. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1980. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 393-408, June.
    18. Laurent Barras & Olivier Scaillet & Russ Wermers, 2010. "False Discoveries in Mutual Fund Performance: Measuring Luck in Estimated Alphas," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(1), pages 179-216, February.
    19. Oberlechner, Thomas & Osler, Carol, 2012. "Survival of Overconfidence in Currency Markets," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 47(01), pages 91-113, April.
    20. Leamer, Edward E, 1983. "Let's Take the Con Out of Econometrics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 31-43, March.
    21. Schwert, G. William, 2003. "Anomalies and market efficiency," Handbook of the Economics of Finance,in: G.M. Constantinides & M. Harris & R. M. Stulz (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Finance, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 15, pages 939-974 Elsevier.
    22. Neely, Christopher J. & Weller, Paul A., 2001. "Technical analysis and central bank intervention," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 20(7), pages 949-970, December.
    23. Taylor, Mark P, 1987. "Covered Interest Parity: A High-Frequency, High-Quality Data Study," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 54(216), pages 429-438, November.
    24. Lo, Andrew W & MacKinlay, A Craig, 1990. "Data-Snooping Biases in Tests of Financial Asset Pricing Models," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(3), pages 431-467.
    25. Timmermann, Allan, 2008. "Reply to the discussion of Elusive Return Predictability," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 29-30.
    26. Okunev, John & White, Derek, 2003. "Do Momentum-Based Strategies Still Work in Foreign Currency Markets?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(02), pages 425-447, June.
    27. Treynor, Jack L & Ferguson, Robert, 1985. " In Defense of Technical Analysis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 757-773, July.
    28. Christopher J. Neely & David E. Rapach & Jun Tu & Guofu Zhou, 2014. "Forecasting the Equity Risk Premium: The Role of Technical Indicators," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 60(7), pages 1772-1791, July.
    29. Bong-Chan, Kho, 1996. "Time-varying risk premia, volatility, and technical trading rule profits: Evidence from foreign currency futures markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 249-290, June.
    30. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Froot, Kenneth A, 1990. "Chartists, Fundamentalists, and Trading in the Foreign Exchange Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 181-185, May.
    31. Martin Eichenbaum & Craig Burnside & Sergio Rebelo, 2007. "The Returns to Currency Speculation in Emerging Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 333-338, May.
    32. Hsu, Po-Hsuan & Hsu, Yu-Chin & Kuan, Chung-Ming, 2010. "Testing the predictive ability of technical analysis using a new stepwise test without data snooping bias," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 471-484, June.
    33. Olson, Dennis, 2004. "Have trading rule profits in the currency markets declined over time?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 85-105, January.
    34. Neely, C. J. & Weller, P. A., 2003. "Intraday technical trading in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 223-237, April.
    35. Cheol‐Ho Park & Scott H. Irwin, 2010. "A reality check on technical trading rule profits in the U.S. futures markets," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(7), pages 633-659, July.
    36. Neely, Christopher J. & Weller, Paul A., 2013. "Lessons from the evolution of foreign exchange trading strategies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 3783-3798.
    37. Po-Hsuan Hsu & Chung-Ming Kuan, 2005. "Reexamining the Profitability of Technical Analysis with Data Snooping Checks," Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 3(4), pages 606-628.
    38. Jensen, Michael C & Bennington, George A, 1970. "Random Walks and Technical Theories: Some Additional Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 25(2), pages 469-482, May.
    39. Levich, Richard M. & Thomas, Lee III, 1993. "The significance of technical trading-rule profits in the foreign exchange market: a bootstrap approach," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(5), pages 451-474, October.
    40. Neely, Christopher J., 2002. "The temporal pattern of trading rule returns and exchange rate intervention: intervention does not generate technical trading profits," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 211-232, October.
    41. R. David Mclean & Jeffrey Pontiff, 2016. "Does Academic Research Destroy Stock Return Predictability?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 71(1), pages 5-32, February.
    42. Lukas Menkhoff & Mark P. Taylor, 2007. "The Obstinate Passion of Foreign Exchange Professionals: Technical Analysis," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(4), pages 936-972, December.
    43. Allen, Helen & Taylor, Mark P, 1990. "Charts, Noise and Fundamentals in the London Foreign Exchange Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(400), pages 49-59, Supplemen.
    44. Bessembinder, Hendrik & Chan, Kalok, 1995. "The profitability of technical trading rules in the Asian stock markets," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 3(2-3), pages 257-284, July.
    45. Zhu, Yingzi & Zhou, Guofu, 2009. "Technical analysis: An asset allocation perspective on the use of moving averages," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3), pages 519-544, June.
    46. Cheung, Yin-Wong & Chinn, Menzie David, 2001. "Currency traders and exchange rate dynamics: a survey of the US market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 439-471, August.
    47. Tarun Ramadorai, 2008. "What determines transaction costs in foreign exchange markets?," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(1), pages 14-25.
    48. Cornell, W Bradford & Dietrich, J Kimball, 1978. "The Efficiency of the Market for Foreign Exchange under Floating Exchange Rates," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(1), pages 111-120, February.
    49. Taylor, Mark P. & Allen, Helen, 1992. "The use of technical analysis in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 304-314, June.
    50. Carol L. Osler, 2003. "Currency Orders and Exchange Rate Dynamics: An Explanation for the Predictive Success of Technical Analysis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(5), pages 1791-1820, October.
    51. Campbell R. Harvey & Yan Liu & Heqing Zhu, 2016. "Editor's Choice … and the Cross-Section of Expected Returns," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(1), pages 5-68.
    52. Blume, Lawrence & Easley, David & O'Hara, Maureen, 1994. " Market Statistics and Technical Analysis: The Role of Volume," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 153-181, March.
    53. Halbert White, 2000. "A Reality Check for Data Snooping," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1097-1126, September.
    54. Timmermann, Allan, 2008. "Elusive return predictability," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 1-18.
    55. Gencay, Ramazan, 1999. "Linear, non-linear and essential foreign exchange rate prediction with simple technical trading rules," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 91-107, February.
    56. Michael Sager & Mark P. Taylor, 2008. "Commercially Available Order Flow Data and Exchange Rate Movements: "Caveat Emptor"," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 583-625, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:finlet:v:22:y:2017:i:c:p:136-139 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:eee:intfin:v:52:y:2018:i:c:p:102-113 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. repec:eee:ecolet:v:162:y:2018:i:c:p:140-145 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eee:mulfin:v:40:y:2017:i:c:p:47-62 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Foreign exchange; Technical analysis; Trading rules; Data-snooping bias;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:102:y:2016:i:c:p:188-208. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505552 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.