Charts should be used to help you time both your buy points and sell points for individual stocks. With regarding to topping patterns, one of the most recognizable is the climax top, where a stock will run up at a much faster rate than in the prior weeks. For example, it may advance 25% to 50% in one to three weeks after a long advance. Trading volume generally picks up during this period. One of the days towards the end will probably show the stock’s greatest one-day price advance since the beginning of the move up. Sell into this unusually stong price action. Recognizing distribution days in a stock’s pattern will also help you analyze whether or not a stock is showing signs of topping. For example, if after a long advance, volume picks up with no further price progress, this may be a sign that institutions are unloading the stock. Charts are not as helpful when considering when to buy or sell a mutual fund because volume figures are not posted for mutual funds.