Thursday, August 20, 2015

2% Down Days

I offer up the following with a bit of hesitation. For, while it may make you feel better about today's market action, it offers no guarantee that one month from today the market will be higher than it is right now---despite the fact that that's been the case 80% of the time during the present bull market. In fact, I might argue that a further decline over the next month would ultimately be a longer-term positive---as corrections during bull markets are essential to their sustainability.

Number of days since March 2009 when the S&P 500 has declined 2+%: 57

Number of days that were followed by gains over the subsequent month: 46

Smallest one-month gain: 0.1%     Largest one-month gain: 14.7%    

Number of days that were followed by declines over the subsequent month: 11

Smallest one-month loss: -0.7%     Largest one-month loss: -9.8%   

Average return: 3.48%

Source: Bespoke Investment Group

P.s. One other point worth noting: While today's 2.11% decline seemed dramatic, such days have occurred, on average, 9 times a year since the beginning of this bull market. Although a lot of those days occurred during 2009 (15), 2010 (10) and 2011 (21). Less so in 2012 (3), 2013 (2), 2014 (4) and 2015 (now 2)---which is why perhaps today seemed so dramatic. Myopia is forever the affliction that exaggerates the emotional response to normal market phenomena.

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