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The Bull Turns Two Years Old

The bull market celebrated its second birthday on March 9, 2011. At press time, the S&P 500 was up by nearly 86% from its 2009 lows. Despite the strong rebound, the index had only risen to summer 2008 price levels. More importantly, portfolios for many investors have not fully participated in the rebound.

Does the bull have more room to run, or is it nearing the age where it will start looking like a tired bovine? The historical average suggests the rally may not yet be over. Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at Standard & Poor’s Equity Research, calculates that the average bull market has lasted 45 months, based on data going back to 1932. This equates to a sell-by date of November 2012.

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