The selling force decreases, and the downtrend starts to slow down. This phase is usually marked by an increase in trading . The Preliminary Support (PS) indicates that some buyers are showing up, but still not enough to stop the downward move.
The Selling Climax ( SC ) is formed by an intense selling activity as investors capitulate. This is often a point of high , where panic selling creates big and wicks. The strong drop quickly reverts into a bounce or Automatic Rally (AR), as the excessive supply is absorbed by the buyers. In general, the trading range ( TR ) of an Accumulation Schematic is defined by the space between the SC low and the AR high.
As the name suggests, the Secondary Test (ST) happens when the market drops near the SC region, testing whether the downtrend is really over or not. At this point, the trading and market tend to be lower. While the ST often forms a higher low in relation to the SC , that may not always be the case.
Based on Wyckoff’s Law of Cause and Effect, Phase B may be seen as the Cause that leads to an Effect.
Essentially, Phase B is the consolidation stage, in which the Composite Man accumulates the highest number of assets. During this stage, the market tends to test both resistance and support levels of the trading range.
There may be numerous Secondary Tests (ST) during Phase B. In some cases, they may produce higher highs (bull traps) and lower lows (bear traps) in relation to the SC and AR of the Phase A.
A typical Accumulation Phase C contains what is called a Spring . It often acts as the last bear trap before the market starts making higher lows. During Phase C, the Composite Man ensures that there is little supply left in the market, i.e., the ones that were to sell already did.
The Spring often breaks the support levels to stop out traders and mislead investors. We may describe it as a final attempt to buy shares at a lower price before the uptrend starts. The bear trap induces retail investors to give up their holdings.
In some cases, however, the support levels manage to hold, and the Spring simply does not occur. In other words, there may be Accumulation Schematics that present all other elements but not the Spring . Still, the overall scheme continues to be valid.
The Phase D represents the transition between the Cause and Effect. It stands between the Accumulation zone (Phase C) and the breakout of the trading range (Phase E).
Typically, the Phase D shows a significant increase in trading and . It usually has a Last Point Support ( LPS ), making a higher low before the market moves higher. The LPS often precedes a breakout of the resistance levels, which in turn creates higher highs. This indicates Signs of Strength (SOS), as previous resistances become brand new supports.
Despite the somewhat confusing terminology, there may be more than one LPS during Phase D. They often have increased trading while testing the new support lines. In some cases, the price may create a small consolidation zone before effectively breaking the bigger trading range and moving to Phase E.
The Phase E is the last stage of an Accumulation Schematic. It is marked by an evident breakout of the trading range, caused by increased market demand. This is when the trading range is effectively broken, and the uptrend starts.