Rajandran R Founder of Marketcalls and Co-Founder Algomojo. Full-Time Derivative Trader. Expert in Designing Trading Systems (Amibroker, Ninjatrader, Metatrader, Python, Pinescript). Trading the markets since 2006. Mentoring Traders on Trading System Designing, Market Profile, Orderflow and Trade Automation.

Market Profile : Balanced and Imbalanced Markets

1 min read

In the last tutorial we discussed how to read a market profile charts and in this section, we will cover different types of markets (Balanced Markets and Imbalanced Markets) and provide a fair idea who is in control for the day.

Balanced Market: It defines a range bound market(sideways) or a bracketed market [where price rotates within the bracketed range]. Balanced markets show there is a lack of conviction among the other timeframe buyers and sellers and typically results in a two-way auction process and the price movements occur within the range.


The above image shows a typical balanced profile (Bell Curve Shaped) where the price rotates within the price range [8609-8654] for the whole day. Volume plays an important role in Market Profile. When Prices move outside a balanced area, or trading range, without the presence of volume, it tends to return to the area. Generally, the participation of the Longer Timeframe trader(Buyers and Sellers) are minimal and they don’t have a strong influence in the market direction. The whole day is either controlled mostly by shorter timeframe traders or the locals (Day Trader). Such rotational days provides very minimal opportunities for a day trader.

Balanced profile days are typically slow and boring. Most of the trend trading strategies fail during these days and sometimes could yield consecutive losses in a stretch when the markets are highly compressed for more than 3 days. Identifying such days during the development of the profile are the key for a day timeframe players to set ‘what to expect from today’s market’.

Balanced Market Occurs

1)Before any bigger economic events, news are expected (e.g RBI policy announcement, FED meeting ..etc)
2)Consolidation in the market after the uptrend or downtrend.
3)Low Participation from the Other timeframe players or Institutional players (Christmas & New Year holiday season)
4)Lack of liquidity(both buy side and sell side) in the market.

The result of this price rotational process is the discovery of prices that are acceptable to both the buyers and the sellers.

Imbalanced Market : It represents a trending market (uptrend or downtrend). Imbalanced market shows the conviction of other timeframe players. The auction is said to be one sided or directional where there are either more Buyers than Sellers or more Sellers than Buyers depending on the direction of price.

Imbalance of buyers will drive the prices higher till the buyers exhausted and the sellers take control of the market. And the Imbalance of Sellers drives the market lower till the sellers get exhausted and the buyers take control of the market.

The above picture shows the imbalanced profile. The days are typically elongated and vertical. And the range extension is typically one-sided most of the days. Range extension confirms the presence of other timeframe players. Typically these days are fast and highly volatile and the risk reward ratio for the day trader is much higher on trendy days.

Imbalanced Market Occurs When
1)Major economic event days (RBI rate decision day, Election Results Day, GDP Announcements…etc)
2)Major catastrophic events.
3)Opening Gap Up or Gap Down days due to major positive or negative news impact.
4)Strong Global Markets Sentiment.

In the next session we will be discussing about different types of profile patterns and its significance.

Rajandran R Founder of Marketcalls and Co-Founder Algomojo. Full-Time Derivative Trader. Expert in Designing Trading Systems (Amibroker, Ninjatrader, Metatrader, Python, Pinescript). Trading the markets since 2006. Mentoring Traders on Trading System Designing, Market Profile, Orderflow and Trade Automation.

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2 Replies to “Market Profile : Balanced and Imbalanced Markets”

  1. In other words …balanced market gives opportunity to either buy or sell.with strict stop loss .usually this type of pattern gives breakout from either sides .according to me after short uptrend ..balanced charts usually break into down trend and vice versa…in most of the cases.. Good analysis very helpful

  2. Hi,

    Market Profile is a vast concept and this is second article in the series. Request you to go thro the entire series. helps a day trader to view the market from a different angle.

    Give more of your time in reading about market profile!

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