- CNN Money, March 6th 2009:
Stocks staged a comeback late Friday afternoon, with the Dow and S&P 500 bouncing after hitting 12-year lows on a bleak February jobs report and more worries about the bank sector.
The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) rose 32 points, or 0.5%. During the session, the Dow briefly touched 6469.95, the lowest intraday level since April 15, 1997. The Dow has fallen in 14 of the last 19 sessions.
The S&P 500 (SPX) index added less than 1 point, or 0.1%. Earlier, the S&P fell to 666.79, its lowest point during a session since Sept. 11, 1996.
The Nasdaq composite (COMP) lost 5 points, or 0.4%. The tech-fueled index briefly touched 1268.54, breaking through its November lows, before closing above that level.
Stocks slipped through most of the session, but the losses were pretty slim considering the implications of the grim jobs report. In the last hour of trade, stocks staged a recovery, with the blue chips ending with gains.
This was the headline 8 years ago, do me a favor and go back right now, and re-read the closing numbers for the three major indexes. Too lazy to? Here you go; Dow Jones- 6,469, S&P- 666, and the Nasdaq- 1,268. Eight years ago, this was the generational bottom. This was the end game of the housing crisis and the ensuing carnage. The market top to bottom took a fifty plus percent haircut. Nothing was safe, nothing worked, and the strategy was sell first and ask questions later. Cash was king and fear ruled.
That day forward though the stock market would begin its ascent in one of the most dramatic fashions in history. Noting in the history of markets has anything approached the speed and tenacity of this market recovery or its ascent to new highs. It took the markets twenty-five years to recover the losses from the crash of 1929. This one took eight years to not only recover, but make new highs well above the levels from the crash. It’s nothing short of astonishing when you think about it.
I reflect on this today, because when it comes to investing we can often forget where we were. It’s good to remember the bad days so you can appreciate the good ones just a little bit more.
By the way closing numbers when this was written. Dow Jones- 20,924, S&P- 2,367, Nasdaq- 5,833
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