Skip to content

CFDs are leveraged products. CFD trading may not be suitable for everyone and can result in losses that exceed your deposits, so please consider our Risk Disclosure Notice and ensure that you fully understand the risks involved. CFDs are leveraged products. CFD trading may not be suitable for everyone and can result in losses that exceed your deposits, so please consider our Risk Disclosure Notice and ensure that you fully understand the risks involved.

How to trade in a bull market: top 5 strategies

Bull markets often represent sound economic conditions. Get the lowdown on bull trading, and how you can be savvy with strategies that could be useful in markets that are ramping up.

Bull and bear Source: Bloomberg

What is a bull market?

A bull market is an occurrence where a financial market, instrument or sector is on an upward trajectory over a long period of time.

Bull market characteristics

The bull market definition may be focused on a strong upward trajectory of price movements, but this inclination is also associated with factors such as:

  • A succession of higher highs and lower lows, ultimately reaching the climax
  • Short-term market corrections (or pullbacks) after successive highs
  • More demand than supply
  • Strong economic conditions
  • Trader and investor psychology with significant bullish sentiments

Bull market example

A bull market is demonstrated by market prices with higher highs and higher lows over an extended period. This is typically coupled with features such as shallow pullbacks and a strong upward momentum.

Here’s an example of a bull run in the stock market:

Bull market trading chart
Bull market trading chart

This bull run was triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic, during which online shopping spiked significantly in the face of lockdown restrictions and extraordinary health concerns.

Bull market tendencies can also be tracked using indicators like a trend line, a single line which follows rising lows, and the moving average.

How to trade in a bull market

With us, you can trade in a bull market by speculating on market price movements and buying and owning underlying assets, respectively.

Bull market trading follows the expected prolonged rising of market’s price. So, traders will typically ‘buy’ (go long), meaning that they are taking a speculative position that matches the anticipation of an ongoing price climb.

With this sentiment top of mind, traders could opt for long positions using leveraged derivatives such as CFDs.

With us, you’ll trade using leverage, meaning that you’d only need to commit an initial deposit, known as margin, while getting full exposure. Leverage can increase both your profits and losses. Therefore, it’s vital that you manage your risk appropriately before opening a position.

Top 5 bull market strategies

Bull market trading strategies offer best practice techniques to consider when bull trading. Although these strategies are based on past performance, they do not guarantee future results.

Here are some bull market trading strategies you can employ when you think a market’s price is on the up:

Buy early in the bull run

While the exact onset of a bull run may be tricky to gauge, a method to confirm its recent commencement is the third touch of a price action on a single line (eg as seen in the higher highs and lower lows chart above). With an expected continued upward trajectory, this tends to be a good time to take a long position or buy physical assets.

Don’t sit on losses for too long

Planning your exit beforehand can help in limiting losses. One way of doing this is deciding to close your position or sell your assets if the price closes below the trend line. Alternatively, you could opt to short-sell if you’re expecting a decline, be it sharp, steady, temporary, or sustained in a bearish manner, if you think that the bull run has run its course

Top bull market chart
Top bull market chart

Take profits at regular intervals

Aiming to lock in profits at regular intervals is one way you can secure, or maybe even stack up on, trading profits.

Follow the market momentum

It’s said that ‘the trend is your friend’. It’s important to note that despite the steady, prolonged increase of price in bull market runs, it still consist of both rising and falling share prices. This means that it’s possible to incur losses on a bull position in a bull market, or make a profit on a sell position. Therefore, it’s essential to analyse the goings-on of a bull trend comprehensively before making a move, whilst taking action timeously.

Buy call options

A popular strategy in bull market trading is buying a call option, which is a contract with a due date that gives you the right to buy a certain asset at a specified price. You may end up deciding not to buy at all as there’s no obligation to do so, but you’d lose the premium you committed to buy the call option.

What are the best investment strategies in a bull market?

Employing a good investments strategy in a bull market could be the difference that takes your yields to new heights. Some popular strategies include:

  • Value investing involves buying under-priced assets, ie trading below their book value, to sell at a higher price. This strategy is often employed on blue-chip companies
  • Growth investing typically focuses on stocks, usually small capitalisation companies, that are expected to experience significant growth, ie above the industry or market average
  • Selling after the bull run climax can be an opportunity to lock in profits. A bearish swing and lows that are below the bull trend line can serve as indicators that the peak has been reached. Although it would be best to sell an investment right before the climax, it’s an opportunity that’s easy to miss. So, the next best thing may be to sell right after the climax passes

Bull markets vs bear market: what are the differences?

Bull markets and bear markets differ in several ways. Here are some key differences:

Bull market

Upward-trending growth in a market over an extended period

Supply is low and demand is high

Often associated with a sound economy

Bullish attitudes can add to positive inclination of a bull trend as a result of more investors buying assets

High likelihood of profiting from long positions and buying physical assets

Bear market

Downward-trending market that reaches or surpasses a 20% price fall since recent highs

Supply is high and demand is low

Often linked to a receding economy

The loss potential for investments is high, which often prompts investors to withdraw their money, which can send the price dipping even lower

Profits are more likely to be realised from short positions and selling investments early on can cut losses

Bull/bear market
Bull/bear market

Trading in a bull market summed up

  • A bull market occurs when a financial market, instrument or sector is on an upward trajectory over a long-term period
  • Some indicators of a bull run are higher highs and higher lows, and a trend line which follows rising lows on the market’s price
  • You can get exposure to bull markets through trading in markets such as stocks, ETFs, forex, commodities and indices
  • Bull market trading strategies can be useful as they’re based on the past performance, but they do not guarantee future results
  • Value investing, growth investing and selling an investment after the bull run has reached its peak are some investment styles that can be useful
  • Bull and bear markets may both derive their names from the animal kingdom, but they differ fundamentally, with stark contrasts

Create an account to get started

Discover the origins of animal terminology and other slang in trading

The information on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG Bank S.A. accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer.

Discover how to trade the markets

Explore the range of markets you can trade – and learn how they work – with IG Academy's free ’introducing the financial markets’ course.

What is the number one mistake traders make?

We reveal the top potential pitfall and how to avoid it. Discover how to increase your chances of trading success, with data gleaned from over 100,000 IG accounts.

For more info on how we might use your data, see our privacy notice and access policy and privacy webpage.

You might be interested in…

Find out what charges your trades could incur with our transparent fee structure.

Discover why so many clients choose us, and what makes us a world-leading provider of CFDs.

Stay on top of upcoming market-moving events with our customisable economic calendar.