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A rise in a security's price above a resistance level (commonly its previous high price) or a drop below a level of support (commonly the former lowest price.) A breakout is taken to signify a continuing move in the same direction. Can be used by technical analysts as a buy or sell indicator.


1. In technical analysis, a situation in which the price of a security rises above a resistance level. The resistance level is a price above which a security only rarely climbs. This is a highly bullish signal because it indicates the price likely will continue to rise until it finds another resistance level.

2. In technical analysis, a situation in which the price of a security falls below a support level. The support level is a price below which a security only rarely drops. This is a highly bearish signal because it indicates the price likely will continue to fall until it finds another support level.


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The advance of a stock price above a resistance level, or the fall of a stock price below a support level. A breakout, especially one on relatively heavy volume, indicates to technicians that the security is about to make a major price movement in the direction indicated by the breakout. Thus, if a breakout is upward, a major upward price movement can be expected. A breakout on relatively low volume is suspect. See also break through, congestion area.


Stock prices fluctuate constantly, but each stock typically moves within a fairly narrow range. That means the stock's average price changes gradually, if at all. But sometimes a stock's price breaks out of its limits, and jumps or tumbles suddenly.

Usually the breakout is fueled by a particular event. The company may realize a commercial success, such as a drug company discovering a new cure for a major disease. Or a breakout may reflect a financial development, such as a new alliance with a successful partner.

References in periodicals archive ?
While a fear of taking the plunge is holding back many of these potential business break-outs, greater awareness of business insurance could protect -edgling rms against uncertainties and help them prosper.
A prison source said: "It's clear that two major break-outs have been thwarted.
He was even offered thousands of pounds for the phone but refused because he feared it could be used to direct terror plots like the London Tube bombings, plan break-outs and run criminal empires from behind bars.
He would wait until after dark before he staged his break-outs because he knew what he was doing was wrong.
Within three weeks of its becoming the UK's first private prisoner escort service 10 years ago, seven prisoners had escaped from custody in seven break-outs.
Each of the country-level reports is from 35 to 60 pages in length, with some presenting analysis of hourly, daily and weekly strategy consulting rate structures, and break-outs for large metropolitan area rates.
The worst year for break-outs was 2009 when 133 prisoners went missing while the following year 112 escaped.
Taking place over three days, having expanded the format to incorporate additional streams, break-outs, workshops and networking events, GTR Asia Trade Finance Week 2014 will place strong emphasis on the trade and export priorities of companies of all sizes, as well as highlighting opportunities across a range of emerging and frontier markets across the continent.
Break-outs have erupted across the country, with 99 cases recorded in Hampshire, 30 in London, 39 in Cheshire and Merseyside, and 54 in the West Midlands.
In addition to the production of TV programs, UNIC Beirut's partnership with the Arab Woman TV Channel also comprises supporting a number of existing programs that are being aired on the channel and the production of special reportages and customized break-ins break-outs on all international days of relevance to women.
Next month, they'll enjoy a recording session with the acclaimed Londoner at the same Shepherd Bush studio which, over the years, has hosted the likes of fellow Valleys break-outs Stereophonics and Manic Street Preachers - before heading off to Switzerland in July to play at the prestigious Montreaux Jazz Festival.
Joe Simpson, spokesman for the POA, said he believed reducing staff by 200 to 380 could lead to attempted break-outs.