Technical analysis is a type of market analysis that studies the supply and demand for securities—stocks, mutual funds, futures, options, etc.—based on price activity and trading volume. The hope is that the analysis of past behavior may uncover patterns that point to future price movements.
In years past, technical analysis was performed using high-end software packages utilizing data typically purchased from third-party data providers. Furthermore, such analysis was left to institutional shops with the resources to afford the software and data.
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