Bears vs. Bulls

May 2019

Using data from First Trust that dates back to 1926, the average bear market has been about 1.3 years long, which is short in comparison to bull markets, which average about 6.5 years.  Succinctly put, bear markets tend to be short and scary, while bull markets tend to be much longer and less steeply sloped.  Panicky investors who consciously or subconsciously extrapolate the steep declines in bear markets (“we’re going to hit zero in a matter of months”) can be their own worst enemies.  On the other hand, in bull markets investors need patience not to sell too quickly.