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Moving averages are widely used in financial markets, especially the stock market. This is also true for cryptocurrencies. Price fluctuations are commonly smoothed out by movements in the average prices over a given time period. All of these statements are true, but what is a moving average?

Moving averages are a type of lagging indicator that records previous period price movements. This is critical to remember whenever you use these strategies to trade cryptocurrencies. Please continue reading for more information.

## What Is Moving Average?

A moving average is a technical indicator that can be used by market analysts and investors to determine the direction of a trend. It averages the data points of financial security over a specific time period by adding the total to the number of data points.

It is referred to as a “moving” average because it is constantly recalculated using the most recent price data.

A moving average helps investors and market analysts predict the direction of a trend in the stock market. Averages can be calculated in a variety of ways, including adding up all of the data points for financial security over a specified time period and dividing the total by the number of data points in the security.

## How Moving Average Works

A moving average is a straightforward technical analysis tool. Moving averages are commonly used to determine a stock’s trend direction or support and resistance levels. Because it is based on past prices, it is a trend-following (or lagging) indicator.

The greater the lag, the longer the time period for the moving average. Because it contains prices for the previous 200 days, a 200-day moving average will have a much greater degree of lag than a 20-day MA. Stock investors and traders closely monitor the 50-day and 200-day moving average figures, which are regarded as important trading signals.

Moving averages are a completely customizable indicator, which means that an investor can calculate an average using any time frame they want.

Moving averages are most commonly used for time periods of 15, 20, 30, 50, 100, and 200 days. The more sensitive the average is to price changes, the shorter the time span used to create it. The average becomes less sensitive as the time span lengthens.

Depending on their trading goals, investors can calculate moving averages over a variety of time periods. Shorter moving averages are typically used for day trading, whereas longer-term moving averages are better suited for long-term investors.

When it comes to moving averages, there is no right or wrong time frame to use. The best way to determine which one is best for you is to experiment with various time periods until you find one that fits your strategy.

Predicting stock market trends is not an easy task. While it is impossible to predict a specific stock’s future movement, using technical analysis and research can help you make better predictions.

A rising moving average indicates an uptrend, while a declining moving average indicates a downtrend. A bullish crossover, which occurs when a short-term moving average crosses above a longer-term moving average, also confirms upward momentum. A bearish crossover, which occurs when a short-term moving average crosses below a longer-term moving average, confirms downward momentum.

While calculating moving averages are useful in and of itself, it can also serve as the foundation for other technical analysis indicators such as Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD).

Traders use the moving average convergence divergence (MACD) to monitor the relationship between two moving averages. A 26-day exponential moving average is subtracted from a 12-day exponential moving average to calculate it.

The short-term average is located above the long-term average when the MACD is positive. This indicates that things are getting better. When the short-term average falls below the long-term average, it indicates a downward trend. Many traders will be looking for a move above or below the zero line as well. A move above zero indicates a buy signal, while a move below zero indicates a sell signal.

## Types Of Moving Average

There are two basic types of moving average;

### 1. Simple Moving Average (SMA)

The simple moving average (SMA) is a simple technical indicator calculated by adding the most recent data points in a set and dividing the total by the number of time periods.

The SMA indicator is used by traders to generate signals on when to enter or exit a market. Because it is based on past price data for a given period, an SMA is backward-looking. It can be calculated for various types of prices, such as high, low, open, and close.

Analysts and investors in financial markets use the SMA indicator to determine buy and sell signals for securities. The SMA assists in identifying support and resistance prices in order to receive signals on where to enter or exit a trade.

When generating the SMA, traders must first calculate this average by adding prices over a given period and dividing the total by the total number of periods. The information is then plotted on a graph.

The formula for Simple Moving Average is written as follows:

SMA = (A_{1 }+ A_{2 }+ ……….A_{n}) / n

Where:

- A is the average in period n
- n is the number of periods

**Example of a Simple Moving Average**

Sam, a stock trader, wants to calculate the simple moving average for Stock ABC by looking at the closing prices of the stock for the last five days. The closing prices for Stock ABC for the last five days are as follows: $23, $23.40, $23.20, $24, and $25.50. The SMA is then calculated as follows:

SMA = ($23 + $23.40 + $23.20 + $24 + $25.50) / 5

SMA = $23.82

### 2. Exponential Moving Average (EMA)

The Exponential Moving Average (EMA) is another type of moving average that gives more weight to the most recent price points to make them more responsive to recent data points. In comparison to the simple moving average, which gives equal weight to all price changes in the given period, an exponential moving average is more responsive to recent price changes.

When calculating the exponential moving average, the following three steps are used:

**Calculate the simple moving average for the period**

The EMA needs to start somewhere, and the simple moving average is used as the previous period’s EMA. It is obtained by taking the sum of the security’s closing prices for the period in question and dividing the total by the number of periods.

**Calculate the multiplier for weighting the exponential moving average**

The formula for calculating the multiplier is as follows:

Multiplier = [2 / (Selected Time Period + 1)]

For example, if the time period in question is 10, the multiplier will be calculated as follows:

Multiplier = [2 / (10+1)] = 0.1818

**The last step is to calculate the current exponential moving average**

The last step calculates the current EMA by taking the period from the initial EMA until the most recent time period, using the price, multiplier, and the previous period’s EMA value. It is computed using the following formula:

Current EMA = [Closing Price – EMA (Previous Time Period)] x Multiplier + EMA (Previous Time Period)

The weighting given to recent price data is higher for a longer-period EMA than a shorter-period EMA. A multiplier of 18.18% is applied to the recent price points of a 10-period EMA, whereas a 9.52% multiplier is applied to the recent price points of a 20-period EMA.

## EMA vs. SMA

The main distinction between the two technical indicators is the sensitivity to price changes. The exponential moving average has a higher sensitivity to recent price changes. This makes the EMA more sensitive to recent price changes.

Although the formula for calculating the EMA is complicated, most charting tools make it simple for traders to follow an EMA. The SMA, on the other hand, gives equal weight to all observations in the data set. It is simple to calculate and is obtained by taking the arithmetic mean of prices over the specified time period.

## Conclusion

The moving average is a market indicator that is widely used across all industries. To put it another way, the moving average is a calculation that determines the average price of an asset over a specified time period.

When used in place of the arithmetic mean, it is referred to as a moving average. It can be a “Simple Moving Average,” which gives each price equal weight, or an “Exponential Moving Average,” which gives recent prices more weight by using the most recent prices.