Sunday, August 7, 2011

What does a 4% down day mean re: Market Condition

Interesting commentary from Doug Short, saying that the -4%+ down day last Thursday indicates that the bear market has resumed.

Doug Short, "My tentative conclusion is that, at least since the onset of the 21st Century, declines in excess of 4% happen in cyclical bear market declines. The one outlier during this time frame was a 4.28% decline on April 20 2009, about six weeks after the 2009 low. So, if you're looking for a glimmer of hope, there is one 21st Century precedent for 4% plus down day in a cyclical bull market. But the overall perspective is not encouraging. "

Note that in the 2000-03 bear market, A couple of the 4% decline days punctuated the market trend's important reversal points, providing a leading indicator of trade-able counter-trend rallies lasting multiple weeks. This is quite different from the 2008-09 bear market, where the 4% decline days were mostly followed by more selling, perpetuating the waterfall decline without a pause for a counter-trend rally. I believe the difference between the two bear markets was that the first was due to a normal business cycle recession whereas the last was due to a financial crisis.

click chart to enlarge

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