Monday, May 11, 2009

Those who forget history... may be on TV

Wouldn't you think that knowing a bit of financial history would be required for those wishing to anchor on a financial network? I'm a bit flumoxed by the following statement from a certain anchor on a certain network (both of whom will remain nameless): "Come on! Bear market rally? 37% on the S&P? That's one enormous bear." Why yes, darling, this IS one enormous bear. Glad you noticed.

I've prattled enough about all the problems that this economy is facing... deeply rooted systemic problems that can't be overcome so quickly... so I won't do it again. This is what other people much smarter than me have referred to as a super bear market... aka a secular bear market. One of the hallmarks of a super bear market is violent moves to the upside followed by a continuation to the downside. If you want to talk about previous bear market rallies that were bigger, I offer one example out of many possible: May 26, 1970 through April 28, 1971 the market was up 51.2% (not including dividends), yet it was still very much a bear market through 1981.

Moral of the story? A rally doesn't a bull market make. What goes up may come down - harder and faster than you think.

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