Since 1875 S&P500 Has Never Risen Seven Consecutive Years in a Row – Really ?

By | January 15, 2015

buybuysellsellI’ve seen the claim in the title in my Twitter feed and there’s also a Business Insider article about it. Not only that, but when we supposedly last had six consecutive positive years (1898-1903) what followed was an 18% correction in 1904.

This would be a strong point in a bear-case scenario. If it was true. But what amazes me is that no one seems to question the accuracy of those statistics. It just gets shared and re-tweeted as if it was gospel truth.

After looking at the actual data though, we get a different picture. The S&P500 was first up six consecutive years between 1947-1952 and then 1953 came with a -1.21% correction. Then we had the ‘greed is good’ eighties when the S&P500 managed eight consecutive positive years (1982-1989) followed by a -3.06% correction in 1990. In the nineties S&P500 made a record with its longest winning streak, nine years (1991-1999) followed by a -9.03% fall in 2000.

I’m not making a case for the S&P500 bulls here. I just think that before we get excited and spread the word about some ‘first time in history’ event, we’d better make sure that it really hasn’t occurred before. Otherwise we’re just like the characters in the drawing above. :)

2 thoughts on “Since 1875 S&P500 Has Never Risen Seven Consecutive Years in a Row – Really ?

  1. Sigurdur Olafsson

    It is always nice to fact check this kind of information, but I am afraid that you are a bit of a victim to your own criticism as I notice that in the data from Damodaran, he includes dividends in his return calculations while I guess that Gundlach and that SocGen guy used the “pure” price change of the S&P500 index (which excludes dividends). That way, 1947 comes in at 0% and 1948 at -0,65% while 1994 also come in negative at -1,54%. Thereby only making 1982-1989 the strike that makes your claim true. The “Greed is good” era apparently was something special 😉

    But in the end it all comes down to how you want to look at the data, with or without the div´s.

    1. JLTrader Post author

      I too wondered if Gundlach’s chart included dividends or not. Either way, it’s still wrong because there’s no mention of the 80s streak.


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