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  • Writer's picture Leslie Lewis (she/her)

What is a Bull Market?

When the stock market, as measured by the S&P 500 or the Dow Jones, (or some other index or indicator), rises more than 20% from its 52 week low (the lowest number it reached in the previous 52 weeks), and if the momentum seems to be trending upward, that is generally known as a Bull Market. It means that 'consumer confidence' is improving and the US economy is strong.

A Bull Market can really only be identified in retrospect, because stocks are unpredictable, and of course, past performance doesn't guarantee future results.

Last year, on October 13, 2022, the S&P500 closed at 3491.58. Yesterday, that number was 4376.86.

Here's what the AI bot ChatGPT wrote when I asked it "What is the percentage change from 3491.58 to 4376.86?"

To calculate the percentage increase from 3491.58 to 4376.86, you can use the following formula:
Percentage Increase = ((New Value - Old Value) / Old Value) * 100
Substituting the given values into the formula:
Percentage Increase = ((4376.86 - 3491.58) / 3491.58) * 100
Calculating the percentage increase:
Percentage Increase = (885.28 / 3491.58) * 100
Percentage Increase ≈ 25.34%

Therefore, the percentage increase from 3491.58 to 4376.86 is approximately 25.34%.

[and ChatGPT, like googlesheets or Excel, uses the asterix '*' to denote multiplication, instead of the 'x' we might have been taught in grade school.]

Short answer: the market is up over 25% as of yesterday. It seems we have entered a 'Bull Market.'

Also, let's not get intimidated by math. The above is a simple percentage calculation, something we learned most likely in middle school. Here's where math becomes fun, or at the very least, more interesting, because it can translate into being better with money.

If you have been following along on this journey, reading this blog since its inception over two years ago, or even started watching anytime in the last year, you will see a few things.

First, the S&P 500 is still down from its all-time high. (For the record, that was January 3, 2022 and it was 4796.56.)

Second, it has been a bumpy and unpredictable ride. This is the concept of Volatility.

Third, the numbers aren't 'neat' or 'pretty.' 3491.58?! What kind of a number is that? I am a little 'woo woo' and I personally like numbers like 3333 or 4321, but that's not how the stock market works, so if I want to improve my financial fluency, I need to be comfortable with numbers that aren't 'tidy' and 'cute.'

Finally, we can see it's hard to predict the bottom. Who realized back in October that that would be the low point of the current market?

And we still don't really know if the market will move back in that direction, because of course, Past Performance Is No Guarantee Of Future Results.

This is why taking the steps of the MGB Investing Starter Kit Process is so important. If an individual actually takes those steps, (and steps 1-6 are already outlined here on this blog), we set ourselves up to be able to take advantage of market momentum, rather than feel at the mercy of it, or left out of the party.

Take a moment to think about your process of watching the S&P500. Get out your Money Journal and do a little writing. This is Money Excavation time.

Ask yourself some questions and write down the answers, if you're willing:

How does it feel learning about the concept of a Bull Market?

How has it been to watch the S&P 500? Any reflections or realizations?

How does it feel to contemplate investing?

Anything else?

Answering these questions for ourselves is a useful exercise on the journey to greater financial fluency.

I'd love to hear any thoughts you have. Please post them in the comments? And as always, thanks for reading this!

photo: I drove by this statue on Wall Street earlier this year and took this pic of some guy climbing it. Wouldn't it be nice if it were that easy to know how to ride a Bull Market?

Quick Links:

Step 1 in the MGB Investing Starter Kit process is HERE Step 2 is HERE --Keep a Digit Tally, like You Need A Budget or RocketMoney Step 3 is HERE What is Investing? is HERE What is The MGB Investing Starter Kit? is HERE Sign up for the waitlist to get an investment account with us, click HERE To join for our next MGB Investing Starter Kit Workshop, sign up HERE Disclosures

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