Williams AlligatorBack to Glossary
Devised by legendary technical analyst Bill Williams and released to the world in the mid-1990s the Williams Alligator is a technical indicator composed of three different trend lines that are each a metaphor for an Alligator’s mouth. The first is the jaw, a blue line that takes a 13-period moving average and moves it 8 periods into the future. Secondly we have the teeth, a red line that takes an 8-period moving average and moves it out 5 periods into the future. Finally the lips, a green line that takes a 5-period moving average and moves 3 periods into the future. The Alligator is primarily used to confirm that a trend is set to continue in its prevailing direction. When volatility is low, all three lines will move very close to each other and begin to overlap, this is a signal that the alligator is sleeping and it’s best not to trade. The alligator is said to be stirring when the green (lip) line begins to cross above the red (teeth) and the blue (jaw) lines. As you can see above, the green line takes the fewest periods of past action into account and the blue line the longest. This means that when price starts moving up, the green line will be the quickest to react, followed by the red line and finally the blue. The alligator is said to be awake when its mouth is wide open, with green leading the charge, followed by red in the middle and finally blue.
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