They Say It’s A Bear Market but It’s Not Really…Yet

Lots of articles out today claiming we are now officially in a bear market, but that’s not really true…at least not yet.

Technically, a bear market is at least a 20% decline from a peak (using closing prices). I’m not a huge fan of that definition since it’s a bit arbitrary, however, it’s widely used so we’ll stick with it to be consistent with the rest of the industry and financial media.

Yes, today, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed more than 20% lower than it’s all-time high closing price from 2/12/2020. However, the DJIA is only made up of 30 stocks. I have no idea why people are so intent on following the DJIA when it’s a tiny sliver of the U.S. stock universe let alone the global stock universe.

In any case, the S&P 500 still has not technically met the 20% threshold. Neither the global stock market (MSCI All Cap World Index) nor the broader U.S. stock market (Russell 3000) have met that threshold either although all are very close. So, for now, the bull market that began in U.S. stocks back on March 9, 2009 is still in tact.