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Technical Studies Reference

Bar Difference


This study calculates and displays the difference between the Input Data 1 Input and Input Data 2 Input for each bar in the chart. By default, each of these Input Data Inputs refers to the same bar. Also by default, the study calculates the difference between the High and Low of a bar, indicating its range.

The study also supports referencing Input Data 2 from a prior bar through the Input Data 2 Offset Input.

Let \(X^{(1)}\) and \(X^{(2)}\) be random variables denoting Input Data 1 and Input Data 2, respectively, and let \(X_t^{(1)}\) and \(X_t^{(2)}\) be their respective values at Index \(t\). Let the Input Offset be denoted as \(k\). Then we denote the Bar Difference at Index \(t\) for the given Inputs as \(BarDiff_t(X_t^{(1)}, X_t^{(2)}, k)\), and we compute it for \(t \geq 0\) as follows.

\(BarDiff_t(X_t^{(1)}, X_t^{(2)}, k) = X_t^{(1)} - X_{t - k}^{(2)}\)

If the Input Calculate Difference in Price Ticks is set to Yes, then we divide by the Tick Size \(s\). The Tick Size is set through Chart >> Chart Settings >> Main Settings, and it appears as a third argument in the Bar Difference function. We calculate it as follows.

\(BarDiff_t(X_t^{(1)}, X_t^{(2)}, k, s) = \displaystyle{\frac{X_t^{(1)} - X_{t - k}^{(2)}}{s}}\)


  • Input Data 1
  • Input Data 2
  • Input Data 2 Offset: This Input specifies bar offset for Input Data 2. If this is set to 1, then this means Input Data 2 refers to the prior bar. For example: If Input Data 1 is set to High and Input Data 2 is set to Low and Input Data 2 Offset is set to 1, then for each bar in the chart, this study will graph the difference between the calculated bar's High and the Low of the prior bar.
  • Calculate Difference in Price Ticks: This Input determines whether or not the Bar Difference is expressed in ticks.

Displaying Bar Difference in Tool Values Window Only

You may want to display the difference between the High and Low of a chart bar in the Tool Values Window. To do this follow the instructions below.

  1. Add the Bar Difference study to the chart.
  2. Set it to display in Chart Region 1.
  3. Set the Draw Style for its Subgraph to Ignore.


The spreadsheet below contains the formulas for this study in Spreadsheet format. Save this Spreadsheet to the Data Files Folder.

Open it through File >> Open Spreadsheet.


*Last modified Tuesday, 31st January, 2023.