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The S&P 500 is now in a bull market. What to expect now based on past data dating back to 1994?

Updated: Jul 9, 2023

The S&P 500 is now more than 20% higher than the October lows. This signifies the start of a bull market.

The start of this bull market represents the end of the longest bear run for the index since 1948. The bear market lasts for a total of 248 days.

Year to date, the S&P 500 is now around +13% higher. With just one more week to the end of June, it's likely that the S&P 500 will probably finish H1 with a double digit positive return.

I decided to look at the performance data of the index since 1994 (almost 30 years ago) just to satisfy my curiosity on how often the index returns a double digit positive return in H1 and what the corresponding H2 usually looks like.

Below is the data based on SPY.

Here are some facts/observations.

1) It's not uncommon for the index to return a double digit positive return in H1. In fact, this has happened 9 times since 1994. In the late 1990s, almost every H1 had a double digit positive return.

2) Out of the 20 instances where there is a positive return in H1, there are only 3 instances where H2 has a negative return. Out of the 9 instances where there is a double digit positive return, all experience a positive return in H2.

3) The index is green most of the time. Since 1994, there have only been 6 years where the index has had a negative annual return. Every time the index has a negative annual return, the next corresponding year almost always returns a positive annual return except for 2000 and 2001 when the doc com crash happens.

So what to expect now? Your call.

I remain cautiously optimistic and will continue to DCA.

I also do share additional content in my Telegram channel. 170 like-minded investors have already joined this channel. What are you waiting for?

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