Best Charts for Day Trading | Live Trading Charts | Footprint Chart (2024)

Trading Basics


Best Charts for Day Trading | Live Trading Charts | Footprint Chart (1)

Interested in day trading? It’s a dynamic venture that demands quick thinking and precise decision-making. In the trading world, where experienced players make strategic moves, having the right tools is essential.

Charts are one of these vital tools, forming the backbone of your day trading strategy. They help you understand price patterns, spot trends, and identify support and resistance levels—essential for wise decision-making in this complex field. And that’s where Bookmap comes in, providing real-time visuals of order book data, so you can see where buyers and sellers are concentrated and how they interact.

Let’s delve deeper into thebest day trading chartsand explore how you can attain a competitive edge.

Essential Day Trading Charts

Day trading is a high-stakes game that requires sharp thinking and precise decision-making. In a world where big players manipulate and maneuver, the right tools can make or break your success.Footprint and Volume Profile charts are two such tools.They provide insights into trading activity and price distribution helping traders gain a significant edge in the market.

Footprint and Volume Profile Charts

Let’s dive in and understand how these charts can improve your trading.

a) Footprint Charts:

Footprint charts (also known as Market Profile charts) are avisual representation of trading activitywithin specific price levels over a given period.

How Footprint Charts Help Day Traders

  1. Price Discovery:

    1. Footprint charts reveal where buying and selling activity is concentrated at different price levels.

    2. This helps tradersidentify areas of price discovery.

    • Volume Analysis:

    1. These charts provide information about the volume traded at each price level.

    2. This allows traders totest the strength of support and resistance levels.

  2. Market Imbalance:

    1. Footprint chartshighlight at what price level aggressive buyers or sellers are entering the market.

    2. This helps tradersspot potential trend reversals or breakout opportunities.

b) Volume Profile Charts:

Volume Profile charts focus primarily on volume traded at specific price levels over a given time frame. They create a histogram that represents the volume distribution across different price levels.

How Volume Profile Charts Help Day Traders

  1. Price Acceptance:

    1. Volume profile charts help tradersidentify price levelswhere the market has accepted a particular price asfair.

  2. Point of Control (POC):

    1. These charts help traders gauge the POC, which is the price level with the highest traded volume.

    2. Most day traders consider it a criticalreference point for potential support or resistance.

  3. Value Area:

    1. This is a range of prices where a significant portion of trading has occurred.

    2. Day traders use it toidentify price rangeswith high trading activity.

How Are They Related to Day Trading?

BothFootprint and Volume Profile chartsprovide insights into market dynamics that are crucial for day traders. They help in:

Bar Data Charts (Bar Charts, Candlestick Charts, Heikin-Ashi Charts)

Bar Data charts are commonly used in trading and technical analysis. They aggregate data over specific periods,which may not necessarily be based on time. In this category, we includecandlestick and Heikin-Ashi chartsdue to their shared characteristics related to bar data representation.

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The Concept of Bar Data Charts Explained

Bar Data charts represent price and trading data by forming bars or candles, each of which summarizes the price action during a predefined time or volume interval.Unlike time-based charts, where each bar represents a fixed amount of time (e.g., one minute or one hour), bar data charts can have:

  • Bars of varying time lengths or,

  • Be based on a certain volume of trades.

Volume-Based Bars

  • Some bar data charts are based on volume periods rather than time.

  • In other words, a new bar is formed after a specific volume of trades has occurred,regardless of the time it takes to reach that volume.

  • This approach is particularly useful for traders who want to gauge market activity based on the number of trades executed.

The Benefits for Traders (Especially Volume-Centric Traders)

Bar Data charts offer several advantages for traders. Read the table below for a comprehensive understanding:



Practical Usage

Establish Price & Volume Relationship

These charts provide a clear view of how price movements correlate with trading volume.

  • A high-volume bar signifies increased trading activity.

  • This suggests strong market interest or momentum.

Identify Price Support and Resistance Levels

Traders can identify support and resistance levels easily on these charts, as price levels with significant trading volume tend to act as barriers.

  • An analysis of bar data charts shows significant trading volume clusters.

  • These are typically displayed as bars with notably higher volumes compared to adjacent bars.

  • These price levels are of particular interest because they often act as strong support or resistance.

Trend Analysis

Bar data charts are useful for trend analysis, helping traders spot potential reversals or confirmations of existing trends based on volume-based patterns.

  • These charts help traders observe consistent patterns of higher volume during upward price movements and lower volume during downward price movements.

  • This analysis helps them have greater confidence in trend confirmations or spot potential reversals.

Candlestick and Heikin-Ashi Charts

Candlestick and Heikin-Ashi charts provide unique visualizations, aiding traders in the analysis of price dynamics and the identification of:

  • Key price levels

  • Trends

  • Potential reversals

By understanding these chart types, traders can enhance their ability to make informed trading decisions in various market conditions.

Let us understand them individually.

    • Candlestick Charts:

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  • provide richer insights compared to traditional bar charts

  • highlight the opening and closing prices for each period, which are represented by the “body” of the candle

  • display high and low prices through the “wick” or “shadow”

    • Heikin-Ashi Charts:

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  • employ a modified formula to smooth out price movements, making trends and reversals more apparent

  • are the preferred choice for traders seeking a clearer representation of market trends

Last Trade / Best Bid and Offer

Last Trade and Best Bid and offer data are crucial tools for day traders. They provide real-time information about the most recent transaction prices and the current state of supply and demand for an asset. This data enables traders to:

  • assess market sentiment

  • execute trades at optimal entry and exit points

Understanding the significance of these tools:

Last Trade

Best Bid & Offer (BBO):


  • It is the most recent transaction executed for a particular asset or security.

    • It represents the price at which the asset changed hands between a buyer and a seller.

  • It represents:

  1. The highest price a buyer is willing to pay (Best Bid) and

  2. The lowest price a seller is willing to accept (Best Offer) for an asset at any given moment.


    • Immediate Price Information:

    • It provides day traders with the most recent price point at which a trade occurred.

    • This information is crucial for assessing the current market valuation of an asset.

    • Liquidity Assessment:

    • BBO data is used to assess the liquidity of an asset.

    • A narrow spread (the difference between the Best Bid and Best Offer) indicates high liquidity, while a wide spread suggests lower liquidity.

    • Market Sentiment:

    • Rapid changes in the Last Trade price can indicate shifts in market sentiment.

    • For example,

    • If the Last Trade occurred at a higher price than the previous trade, it may suggestbullish sentiment.

    • While a lower price may implya bearish sentiment.

    • Entry and Exit Points:

    • Traders often look to execute trades at or near the Best Bid (for buy orders) or Best Offer (for sell orders).

    • This helps in minimizing slippage and transaction costs.

    • Execution Timing:

    • Day traders often use Last Trade data to time their entries and exits.

    • By monitoring recent trades, they can identify potential entry points during price fluctuations.

    • Market Depth:

    • BBO data provides insights into the depth of the market.

    • It shows how many orders are queued at different price levels.

Pros and Cons of Different Chart Types

The choice of chart type depends on several factors:

Beginners should start with simpler charts to build a solid understanding of price movements, while advanced traders can explore more complex chart types for deeper market insights.

Depth of Information vs. Clarity

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When selecting chart types, there’s often atrade-off between the depth of information they provide and the clarity of that information. Let’s explore this concept:

Depth of Information

The more detailed the information is, the better your decision-making will be.It is a plain and simple belief, widely followed in the stock market. A chart or tool with a greater depth of information provides more detailed insights into:

  • Price movements

  • Market dynamics

  • Trading patterns

Most day traders prefer the following tools for gaining in-depth information:




Candlestick Charts

  • Provide opening, closing, and low prices for each period

  • Aid in identifying price patterns and trends

  • Present a lot of data, which can be overwhelming for some traders

Heikin-Ashi Charts

  • Smooth out price fluctuations, making trends and reversals apparent

  • Suitable for identifying the overall trend

  • Offer less detailed information compared to candlestick charts

Footprint & Volume Profile Charts

  • Provide detailed insights into trading activity, price distribution, and order flow

  • Highly valuable for advanced traders

  • Bigger learning curve as their thorough comprehension requires a deep understanding of market dynamics.


Clear data visualizations are user-friendly, facilitating:

  • Insights extraction

  • Pattern identification

  • Information comprehension

Most day traders prefer the following tools for gaining clarity in their trading decisions:




Line Charts

  • Simplicity makes them beginner-friendly

  • Ideal for spotting long-term trends

  • Limited details

  • Unsuitable for advanced analysis

Bar Charts

  • Compact format for data presentation

  • Ideal for spotting support and resistance levels

  • Do not provide as much information as candlestick charts

Renko Charts

  • They filter out noise and highlight significant price movements

  • They help in identifying trends

  • They do not provide precise entry and exit points

Suitability for Trading Styles

Different trading styles, such as scalping, swing trading, and position trading, require specific chart types that align with their objectives and timeframes.Let’s explore which charts are better suited for each trading style.

a) Scalpers

  • Scalpers are traders who aim to profit from very short-term price movements, often holding positions for minutes or even seconds.

  • For scalping, chart types that provide quick and precise information are preferred.

Preferred Charts:



Tick Charts

  • Based on the number of trades rather than time.

  • Offer real-time data and help scalpers make rapid decisions.

1-Minute Candlestick Charts

  • Suitable for slightly longer-term scalping.

  • Provide enough detail to identify short-term trends and entry/exit points.

Note:Bookmap’s heatmap provides a visual representation of market depth, showing where buyers and sellers are concentrated in real-time. Scalpers can quickly assess liquidity levels to make rapid trading decisions.

b) Swing Traders

  • Swing traders aim to capture medium-term price movements over several days or weeks.

Preferred Charts:



Candlestick Charts

  • Swing traders often rely on daily or 4-hour candlestick charts to identify:

  1. Longer-term trends and

  2. Key support/resistance levels.

Footprint Charts

  • Bookmap provides footprint charts, which offer insights into trading activity and price distribution over a specific period.

  • Swing traders can use these charts to identify areas of price discovery and assess support/resistance levels.

Note:Bookmap also offers swing traders Historical Depth Data &Iceberg Detection. Swing traders can analyze how the order book evolves over time to identify recurring patterns and potential support/resistance levels. And the Iceberg Detector helps identify hidden large orders, which can be crucial for swing traders looking for support/resistance zones.

c) Position Traders

  • Position traders hold trades for much longer periods, from weeks to months or even years.

  • They require chart types that provide a long-term perspective with less noise.

Preferred Charts:



Weekly or Monthly Line Charts

    • These simple charts offer an uncluttered view of long-term price trends.

    • This makes them suitable for position traders who don’t need to monitor the market daily.

Renko Charts

  • They focus on significant price movements.

  • They help position traders identify major trends without getting caught up in minor fluctuations.

How Bookmap Revolutionizes Day Trading Visualization

Bookmap’s real-time market dynamics visualization capabilities help day traders gain a competitive advantage. It transforms the way traders perceive and respond to market data, offering a dynamic, visual representation of live order book data, trade executions, and liquidity levels. Here’s how Bookmap’s real-time market visualization capabilities are reshaping day trading:

Real-time Market Dynamics

Bookmap revolutionizes the way day traders perceive and respond to market data, allowing them to make more informed trading decisions.With greater emphasis on real-time market visualization, Bookmap stands out by providing traders with a unique, real-time view of market dynamics.

Unlike traditional charts that display historical price data, Bookmap offers a dynamic, visual representation of live order book data and trade executions.

Let’s understand how Bookmap’s real-time visualization is a game-changer:

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  • Live Trade Executions:

    • Bookmap displays trades as they occur.

    • These are represented as dots or bubbles on the chart, with colors indicating buy or sell activity.

    • Traders can witness the precise moment when trades are executed.

    • Order Book Heatmap:

    • Bookmap’s heatmap visualizes the depth of the market, showing:

      • Areas of high liquidity (congestion) and

      • Low liquidity (gaps).

    • This information helps traders identify critical support and resistance levels in real-time.

  • Depth of Market (DOM) Visualization:

    • The DOM ladder within Bookmap offers a clear view of limit order levels, allowing traders to see where buying and selling interest is concentrated.

    • This transparency is invaluable for understanding market sentiment.

The Heatmap and Volume Dots

Bookmap offers two distinctive features that significantly enhance a trader’s understanding of market dynamics:the Heatmap and Volume Dots.

These tools provide real-time insights into order flow and volume distribution, offering traders a unique advantage in their decision-making process. See how:



Volume Dots

What does it mean?

  • Visualizes the order book and liquidity in real-time.

  • Depict individual real-time trades.

  • These are displayed as dots on the price chart.

How is it used?

  • A color-coded grid is used to represent market depth at different price levels.

  • Color-coded dots indicate whether the trade was a buy or a sell.

How does it help day traders?

  • The color intensity on the heatmap reflects the concentration of orders at specific price levels.

  • Darker areas indicate higher liquidity.

  • While lighter areas signify lower liquidity.

  • Each dot corresponds to a specific trade execution.

  • It helps day traders see the exact price and volume of each trade as it happens.

  • The heatmap helps traders identify crucial support and resistance levels where significant buying or selling interest is present.

  • These levels often play a pivotal role in decision-making.

  • The color-coded dots provide immediate insight into market sentiment.

  • A cluster of green dots (buy trades) indicates bullish activity, while a cluster of red dots (sell trades) suggests a bearish sentiment.

  • Traders can use the heatmap to identify price levels with a sudden increase in liquidity.

    • For example,

A sudden surge in dark blue (high liquidity) on the heatmap may indicate a breakout level.

  • Scalpers can use volume dots to pinpoint rapid price movements and execute quick trades.

    • For example,

Seeing a cluster of red dots followed by a cluster of green dots might signal a short-term reversal.

Order Flow: Understanding Market Pulse

Understanding order flow is essential for grasping the dynamics of buying and selling activity within the market. Bookmap’s Market Pulse feature takes this understanding to the next level by providing real-time visualization of order flow. It offers:

  • Visualizing Order Flow:

    • Bookmap displays the order flow on its intuitive chart, offering traders a dynamic view of market activity.

    • It shows individual trades, their sizes, and their prices as they occur.

  • Market Depth Analysis:

    • The Depth of Market (DOM) ladder within Bookmap displays limit order levels, revealing where buyers and sellers are concentrated.

    • This allows traders to anticipate potential support and resistance levels based on order book dynamics.

  • Market Sentiment Insights:

    • By observing the order flow, traders can gauge market sentiment.

    • For instance, a surge in buy orders may indicate bullish sentiment, while an increase in sell orders could suggest bearish sentiment.

Market Pulse Feature:

Bookmap’sMarket Pulse featureprovides traders with an additional layer of information. It quantifies market activity in real-time, offering insights into market conditions.



Practical Usage

Gauging Strength

  • Market Pulse gauges the strength of order flow.

  • Helps traders identify periods of high or low activity.

  • It assesses the intensity of price movements.

Consolidation vs. Momentum

  • Traders use Market Pulse to distinguish between market consolidation (low activity) and momentum (high activity).

  • It assists in timing entries and exits.


Selecting the appropriate chart type based on one’s trading style and objectives is paramount for success in the dynamic world of trading.

For beginners, simpler charts like Line Charts and basic Bar Charts provide a clear and manageable view of price movements, helping them build a foundational understanding. On the other hand, advanced traders may benefit from the depth of information provided by Candlestick Charts, Heikin-Ashi Charts, Footprint Charts, and Volume Profile Charts, allowing for more in-depth analysis and strategy refinement. Trading styles, such as scalping, swing trading, or position trading, further influence the choice of chart type.

Bookmap’s real-time market visualization tools (including heatmap and volume dots) provide insights into order flow, liquidity, and market sentiment. These tools empower traders to make well-informed decisions, adapt to changing market conditions, and anticipate shifts in supply and demand dynamics.

Ready to elevate your day trading with advanced visualization tools? Dive into the world of Bookmap and experience trading insights like never before.Start Your Bookmap Journey Today!

Best Charts for Day Trading | Live Trading Charts | Footprint Chart (2024)
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