Alligator Indicator by Bill Williams


Forex MT4 AlligatorDownload: Alligator.mq4

Alligator indicator consists of 3 Moving Averages:

Alligator’s jaws (blue line) – 13-period Simple Moving Average built from (High+Low)/2, moved into the future by 8 bars;

Alligator’s teeth (red line) - 8-period Simple Moving Average built from (High+Low)/2, moved by 5 bars into the future;

Alligator’s lips (green line) - 5-period Simple Moving Average built from (High+Low)/2, moved by 3 bars into the future.

In order to add Alligator indicator to Metatrader 4 chart:
Go to Menu -> Insert -> Indicators -> Bill Williams -> Alligator.


How to trade with Alligator Indicator

Alligator indicator helps to determine the presence and absence of a trend as well as its direction.
For an uptrend to be true and valid 3 lines (Jaws, Teeth and Lips) of Alligator indicator must be laid out appropriate way: Jaws at the bottom (blue), then teeth (red), then lips (green) on top.
Opposite for downtrend: jaws on top (blue), teeth (red), then lips below (green).

If lines are intertwined or laid in the wrong order or are moving close together as one, it means that Alligator is sleeping with its mouth closed. Traders should not open new trades.

As Alligator sleeps it becomes hungry. The longer he sleeps the hungrier he becomes – the longer the market stays without a trend, the more vigorously it will break into a new trend.
When the trend starts, Alligator wakes up and opens it mouth (3 lines get into order and start to move apart) – this is the time to start trading with a trend.

When Alligator is full and happy, he closes his mouth and goes to sleep again – the 3 lines move closer together or intertwine again.

Elliott wave traders can use Alligator as a helping indicator to identify impulsive and corrective waves: when price trades outside Alligator’s mouth, the impulsive wave is forming, when price trades inside Alligator’s mouth, the corrective Elliott wave is forming.

Don't feed the Alligator when it sleeps!


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thank you, simple.


thank u very much

waste i lose ore than $4854 using Alligator Indicator

Can anyone explain the rationale behind shifting the Alligator lines forward in time?

I don't know the reason for it, possibly usability or visual backtesting (just a guess).
Either way, Alligator indicator will only show what's happening now, it won't get any forecasting value no matter what Shift settings are.

love the explanation

It also wise for a trader to consider using other indicators rather than the alligator alone. This way, the trader will be able to minimize losses. however, the alligator indicator will be supported by other indicators to confirm the trend.

hello mr B Willianms how can i get the procedure on how to read the indicator and apply it on my metertrader.

Keep on studying, mate. B. Williams is a man who created many useful indicators, but this is not his website :)

Alligator indicator should be supported by an oscillator to know when the Alligator is sleeping or hungry

please kindly fixing time to entry and exit to be explained. eg -first to use higher or lower time frame in intraday and for positional trade for next near far month

Trades should choose 1 primary time frame to trade with: plan entries and exits.
Then, as the signal appears on the primary time frame, a trader can enter a trade immediately, or as an option go one time frame lower to see the smaller market changes in action and pick a better price for an entry there. Also the lower time frames help with re-entries.

thank you it s simple and undrstendable.

It's all nice in theory, and easy to show past charts, but when you're trading live, and things are moving forward, it's a bit of a different story. The example here, if you were to go with the point when things actually get drawn on the indicator, you wouldn't even get a confirmation from the alligator until about 4515, which is about 450 pips that it's dropped already. That makes a lot of traders nervous, because usually with big movements come big retracements. And with the alligator's significant lag, it's a big question or not of how effective the alligator really is. Again, looks great "after" the fact, but not when you're trading live, watching the indicator draw.

how can determine a stop with alligator?

I mean , how can one determine the stop-loss using the alligator?

Stops can be effectively trailed behind the Alligator's jaw (blue line).

My charting software doesn't have Smoothed MA as an option, is it sometimes called something else ie simple ?

It is Simple MA, I've somehow managed to misspell it.

Smoothed Ma if you have coustom indicators try this formula MS
you should see a smoothing average somewhere on the window that pops up. Hope this helps

The Aligator indicator is one addition to the lagging indicators out there. is late to confirm entries, but work better during trend days.

Obviously, do NOT attempt to trade when jaws are closed and use price action/candle analysis for entries/exits and S/R for SL's & TP's.
watch the price cross on red line (teeth)and go in for 20-30 pips, good about 75% of the time IF you pay attention to the candles.-

I understand the entries with the Alligator. What is the exit signal? Yug N.

Exit rules would be as follows:
1. When Long: if the price bar closes below Alligator's teeth (red line) - exit.
When Shot: if the candle closes above Alligator's teeth - exit.

2. When Alligator changes the signals from Buy to Sell and vise verse - exit.

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