Why do traders always talk about support and resistance levels? What do they mean and how can traders use these levels to better understand where the market is heading next? 

Understanding support and resistance levels can greatly assist both traders and investors. It’s all about understanding how prices tend to move. There are usually psychological barriers to prices moving beyond key levels. Support and resistance is all about understanding where those levels are and how prices are likely to move from that level. 

Think of a support level like a physical floor on the share price. Say that a share is trading at $4.30 and imagine there is a floor at $4.00. As the price moves towards $4.00, it has a difficult time getting past that price because the floor stops the price from going below $4.00. 

In fact you will probably see the price bounce off $4.00 as it tries to drill a hole in the floor. The more times that the price touches the floor, the weaker the floor will become. This occurs until the floor is broken. Once the floor is broken, the share price is free to fall to the next floor or support level.