## Moving Average Convergence Divergence

### Moving Average Convergence Divergence

Moving average convergence divergence (MACD) is a trend-following momentum indicator that shows the relationship between two moving averages of a security’s price.

The MACD is calculated by subtracting the 26-period exponential moving average (EMA) from the 12-period EMA.

The result of that calculation is the MACD line. A nine-day EMA of the MACD called the “signal line,” is then plotted on top of the MACD line, which can function as a trigger for buy and sell signals. Traders may buy the security when the MACD crosses above its signal line and sell—or short—the security when the MACD crosses below the signal line. Moving average convergence divergence (MACD) indicators can be interpreted in several ways, but the more common methods are crossovers, divergences, and rapid rises/falls.

**The Formula for MACD is:**

MACD = 12-Period EMA − 26-Period EMA

MACD is calculated by subtracting the long-term EMA (26 periods) from the short-term EMA (12 periods). An exponential moving average (EMA) is a type of moving average (MA) that places a greater weight and significance on the most recent data points.

The exponential moving average is also referred to as the exponentially weighted moving average. An exponentially weighted moving average reacts more significantly to recent price changes than a simple moving average (SMA), which applies an equal weight to all observations in the period.

The MACD has a positive value whenever the 12-period EMA is above the 26-period EMA (the blue line in the price chart) and a negative value when the 12-period EMA is below the 26-period EMA. The more distant the MACD is above or below its baseline indicates that more the distance between the two EMAs is growing.

### Key Features

- Moving average convergence divergence (MACD) is calculated by subtracting the 26-period exponential moving average (EMA) from the 12-period EMA.
- MACD triggers technical signals when it crosses above (to buy) or below (to sell) its signal line.
- The speed of crossovers is also taken as a signal of a market is overbought or oversold.
- MACD helps investors understand whether the bullish or bearish movement in the price is strengthening or weakening.