Introduction to Overbought Stock

Traders use the terms ‘overbought’ and ‘oversold’ quite often when they discuss stocks. That’s because they can influence prices and market sentiment.

As a starting point, let’s first discuss, what does overbought stock mean? Well, traders believe that overbought stocks have a price higher than their actual value. This happens when there’s a significant uptick in buying volumes. Such a situation drives the price upward disproportionately.

The logic is that if the stock has all been bought, then there are no traders left to buy it. This means the price will likely fall.

How to Identify Overbought Stock

Now that we have the answer to “What does overbought stock mean”, let’s find out how to identify these stocks. Investors use technical indicators to identify overbought stocks in the market. Some of the most commonly used technical indicators include Relative Strength Index (RSI) and the Stochastic Oscillator.

The RSI Indicator

This is a momentum oscillator that measures the speed and change of price movements. It is typically used with a period of 14, and values range from 0 to 100. Generally, an RSI above 70 suggests that a stock is overbought.

The Stochastic Oscillator

Through the Stochastic Oscillator, traders can compare a particular closing price of a security to a range of its prices over a certain period. This momentum indicator has values that range between 0 to 100. To know if a stock is overbought, check for values over 80.

The Impact of Overbought Stock

There are a number of considerations to keep in mind when you have a situation of overbought stock. Firstly, overbought stock suggests that it might be overpriced. At the same time, this means it’s due for a correction or at least a slowdown in its upward movement.

Traders might expect the price to fall and may decide to sell the stock or refrain from buying more of it. As a result, overbought conditions can lead to a downturn in the stock price as selling pressure increases.

Strategies for Dealing with Overbought Stock

At the end of the day, you need to develop a plan for dealing with overbought stock. We discuss common strategies below:

Sell or Short Sell

If a trader owns a stock that has become overbought, they might choose to sell to secure profits before the price falls. Alternatively, traders who don’t own the stock might decide to short sell it, hoping to profit from an expected price drop.

Put Options

Traders might also buy put options on overbought stocks. This strategy allows the trader to profit if the stock price falls.

Wait and Observe

Another strategy is to simply wait. Overbought conditions can last longer than expected, especially in strong bull markets. Therefore, traders might wait for additional signals before deciding to trade.

Examples of Overbought Stock

To further understand overbought stocks and the impact they can have on the stock market, let’s take a look at some examples.

One of the most notable cases of an overbought stock happened during the tech bubble in the late 1990s. A number of technology companies’ stock prices soared to extreme levels. This was due to excessive optimism and speculative investing.

Traders heavily overbought these stocks, and when the bubble burst, prices crashed. This led to significant losses for many investors. That’s why it’s important to avoid stocks with a lot of sensationalism surrounding them.

Another example is the run-up in Tesla’s share price in 2020. By many indicators, including the RSI, the stock was deemed to be in overbought territory for some time. This indicated that a correction might be imminent, which eventually happened.


Understanding the concept of an overbought stock is essential for traders and investors to manage risk and make informed decisions. One can easily identify overbought stocks with technical indicators like RSI and Stochastic Oscillator. However, deciding on the best course of action can be more complex.

Investors should consider their risk tolerance, investment goals, and market conditions before making decisions. It’s also important to remember that while a stock may be overbought, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will immediately correct.



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