Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The third quarter of 2009

The third quarter of 2009 is now over and it produced the best gains the broad market has seen since 1998. Both the S&P 500 and the Dow sported gains of more than 15% over this time span. Following are some more detailed statistics about the broad market's significant gains in recent months:

The NASDAQ Composite gained 15.7% this quarter and has now rallied more than 67% off its March lows. The S&P 500 gained 15% this quarter and is up more than 56% from its March lows; however, it remains 9% down from a year ago and is still more than 32% off its October 2007 high. Finally, the Dow has also gained some 15% this quarter and is up more than 40% from its March low. Currently, the Dow remains a little over 21% below its October 2007 peak. Many analysts continue to remain largely bullish on the market, saying that even modest pullbacks will be seen as buying opportunities. In contrast, it appears not all investors agree: According to the American Association of Individual Investors, the degree of investor bearishness recently stood at 44.5%, a number that exceeds the long term average of 30%.

Among today's economic data releases, there was positive news on the second-quarter gross domestic product offset by a surprising decline in the Chicago Purchasing Managers Index (a measure of Midwestern manufacturing activity) in September.

Tomorrow is the first trading day of the fourth quarter and may present a challenge to investors as the Institute for Supply Management is set to report on manufacturing activity in September. A larger test is however scheduled for Friday, where the government will deliver its monthly jobs report.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I just discovered your site, and I can tell you know what you're doing. Today was pretty obvious as a short to me, but I'm wondering about tomorrow. Do you think based on today's close that we'll gap down or drop more tomorrow morning? That's what I'm seeing but it's hard for me to believe after how far we've dropped already. Adv/dec. is pretty extended. Thanks.