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US Equity Returns Following Past Downturns

Sudden market downturns can be unsettling.  Sticking with your plan may put you in the best position to capture a recovery.

A broad market index tracking data since 1926 in the US shows that stocks have generally delivered strong returns over one-year, three-year, and five-year periods following steep declines.

Dimensional Fund Advisors has provided the following analysis:

Periods in which cumulative return from peak is –10%, –15%, or –20% or lower and a recovery of 10%, 15%, or 20% from trough has not yet occurred are considered downturns. For the 10% threshold, there are 3,442 observations for 1-year look ahead, 3,396 observations for 3-year look ahead, and 3,345 observations for 5-year look ahead. For the 15% threshold, there are 3,175 observations for 1-year look ahead, 3,167 observations for 3-year look ahead, and 3,166 observations for 5-year look ahead. For the 20% threshold, there are 2,561 observations for 1-year look ahead, 2,560 observations for 3-year look ahead, and 2,560 observations for 5-year look ahead. One-year, 3-year, and 5-year periods are overlapping periods. The bar chart shows the average returns for the 1-, 3-, and 5-year periods following market declines.
Data provided by Fama/French, available at http://mba.tuck.dartmouth.edu/pages/faculty/ken.french/data_library.html.
Eugene Fama and Ken French are members of the Board of Directors of the general partner of, and provide consulting services to, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP. Short-term performance results should be considered in connection with longer-term performance results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Their performance does not reflect the expenses associated with the management of an actual portfolio.  Investing risks include loss of principal and fluctuating value. There is no guarantee an investment strategy will be successful. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP is an investment advisor registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The author does not intend to provide investment, legal or tax advice as these materials are for general educational purposes only.  Please consult your legal, tax or investment professional for advice on your particular situation. This material is derived from sources believed to be reliable, but its accuracy and the opinions based thereon are not guaranteed. It is not intended to be a solicitation, offer or recommendation to acquire or dispose of any investment or to engage in any other transaction. Investing involves risk including the possible loss of principal. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Please refer to RRCM’s Form ADV Part 2 for additional disclosures regarding RRCM and its practices.