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Author: TMFDoug Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Home Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 12  
Subject: Understanding Bear Markets Date: 9/29/2008 9:44 PM
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Greetings!

I just spotted this new discussion forum and thought participants might be interested in my Bear Market Photo Album:

http://dshort.com/charts/bear-markets.html?07-08-SP500-bear

The photo album offers a comparison of the nine bear markets since 1950, using the S&P 500 as the poster child for market performance.

In addition, here's a scatter diagram that shows how today's bear market compares with the other eight since 1950:

http://dshort.com/charts/bear-markets.html?bear-scatter-char...

And here's a chart that compares today's bear market with the similar pattern in 1973-1974 -- at least so far:

http://dshort.com/charts/bear-markets.html?two-bears-73-74-0...

My rationale for sharing these charts is that an intelligent bear market strategy needs a basic understanding of how long they last and the historic range of declines.

I generally update these charts each evening after the market closes.

On a personal note, I'm a retired Fool and board stroller for the Motley Fool Rule Your Retirement subscription service. I've been a student of bear markets since the nasty beast of 1973-1974 -- the first of my adult life. In the summer of 1973 I was promoted to assistant professor of English, I became a new father, and my wife and I bought our first home. A couple months later, the Arab Oil Embargo triggered gasoline shortages, rationing and lines at the pump, and a tripling of gas prices.

I like bull markets much better!

Cheers,
Doug
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