Several market commentaries I regularly review have observed that this March is the “four-year anniversary of the current bull market.” The significance of measuring the length of a bull market is that since they all eventually end, it makes sense to try to anticipate the next downturn.
Is it any different when a market is recovering from a risk averse, fear-driven, over-sold condition, than when it goes up because of irrational exuberance? Implicitly, there is a mean valuation. Does time spent below the mean count the same as time at or above the long term trend? If GDP is barely growing, and valuations are simply normalizing to average levels, should this count against the duration of a bull market? Is it simply a reflection of the depth and severity of the last bear market?
I think these are issues to take into consideration when evaluating the duration of the current bull market. I think valuation and earnings expectations are more significant.
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