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Relative Strength


Relative Strength is a financial rating system that measures a stock’s price performance over a specified period of time compared to other stocks or to a market index. Essentially, it provides a ranking for a stock in relation to its peers. The higher the relative strength, the better the stock has performed compared to other investments.


The phonetics for “Relative Strength” is:/ˈrɛlətɪv streŋθ/

Key Takeaways

  1. Measure of Asset Performance: Relative strength is a measure of the performance of an asset relative to another asset or to a benchmark. It enables investors to compare the performance of a particular stock or mutual fund to a market index and determine if it is outperforming or underperforming the market index.
  2. Technical Analysis: Relative strength is an important tool in technical analysis, a methodology used to predict the direction of prices through the study of historical market data. It is often used in combination with other technical analysis tools to make buy or sell decisions in various markets.
  3. Indicator of Momentum: Relative strength can also be used as an indicator of momentum. A high relative strength value, such as one above 70 on the Relative Strength Index, might indicate a potential overbought situation, suggesting that the asset might experience a price correction. Conversely, a low relative strength value, such as one below 30, might indicate a potential oversold situation, pointing to a possibility of a price increase.


Relative Strength is a crucial concept in business and finance as it allows investors to compare the performance of a particular stock to that of the overall market or a specific benchmark. By evaluating relative strength, investors can identify which stocks are outperforming or underperforming and make an informed decision on where to allocate their resources. It serves as an essential tool in strategic planning and investment management, helping to minimize risks and enhance potential returns. High relative strength indicates a strong and often desirable investment, while a low relative strength may suggest an underperforming or high-risk investment. Therefore, understanding relative strength is key for making sound investment decisions.


Relative Strength serves an integral purpose in financial analysis, particularly in the field of technical analysis which concerns itself with the study of market trends, past prices and volumes. The main purpose of relative strength is to identify and anticipate potential investment opportunities by comparing the performance of particular stocks or financial instruments against others or against a benchmark such as a market index. Essentially, it helps investors to understand how a given stock is performing in comparison to the broader market or its direct competitors.Moreover, Relative Strength is utilized to uncover the potential momentum of a stock. If a stock consistently shows high relative strength in comparison to the market, it signifies that the stock could be entering a bullish phase. Conversely, a stock with consistently low relative strength may indicate that it is heading towards a bearish period. Therefore, this type of analysis can be a key element in devising trading strategies and assessing the general health of a stock’s performance.


Relative Strength is a concept used in finance and investing referring to the comparison of an investment’s performance to a particular benchmark or market index. Here are three real-world examples:1. Apple Inc. vs. S&P 500: If an investor is evaluating the performance of Apple Inc.’s stock, they might compare it to the performance of the S&P 500. If Apple’s stock price has grown at a faster rate than the S&P 500 over a given period, we say that Apple has shown stronger relative strength.2. Mutual Fund Comparison: A mutual fund manager compares her fund’s performance to the average performance of all funds in the same category (like Large Cap, Mid Cap, Small Cap, etc.) to demonstrate the fund’s relative strength. If the fund’s performance is above the average, it indicates that the fund exhibits relative strength in its category.3. Cryptocurrency: For example, Bitcoin is often used as a benchmark in the crypto market. When the price of Ethereum increases at a greater rate than Bitcoin over the same timeframe, it suggests that Ethereum has a stronger relative strength.Remember, while relative strength may signal investment potential, it’s just one of many factors investors should consider before making investment decisions.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is Relative Strength in finance?

Relative Strength is a momentum investing technique that compares the performance of a particular security or investment, to that of the broader market or a bench-mark index.

How is Relative Strength calculated?

The Relative Strength is calculated by taking a specific security’s price change over a certain time period and dividing it by the price change of a market benchmark over the same period. This ratio shows how the security has performed compared to the benchmark.

What is the purpose of using Relative Strength?

Relative Strength is used by investors to identify and measure a stock’s momentum, and compare its price performance with other stocks or the overall market. It helps investors decide whether to buy, sell, or hold a particular investment.

How does one interpret Relative Strength?

A higher Relative Strength ratio indicates that the stock is outperforming the market or benchmark index, while a lower ratio indicates that the stock is underperforming the market.

Is the Relative Strength a standalone indicator for making investment decisions?

While Relative Strength is a useful tool, it should not be used alone. It’s recommended to use it alongside other indicators and tools.

Can the Relative Strength indicate future performance of a stock?

Relative Strength is a momentum indicator and provides insight into the recent past performance of a stock compared to others or the market itself. However, it does not guarantee or directly indicate the future performance of the stock.

Does Relative Strength only apply to stocks?

No, Relative Strength can be applied to any investable asset, such as bonds, commodities, or ETFs, as long as there is a suitable benchmark to compare performance against.

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