(MoneyWatch) If you've been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that data mining (or the act of messing with numbers to find specific patterns) should provide investors little more than a chuckle. While October has typically been a frightful month for stocks, a little data mining also shows the S&P 500 Index's devilish side. (Thanks to Howard Silverblatt of Standard & Poor's for the data.) On Oct. 9, 2007, the S&P 500 closed at 1,565.15, the index's highest point in its history. Last week, as we approached the fifth anniversary of that high water mark, the S&P 500 closed at 1,460.93, or 6.66 percent off its historical high. This isn't the first time the S&P 500 has displayed the mark of the beast. During the market low on March 6, 2009, the index hit its lowest point of the recession at 666 before rebounding to close slightly higher. October can be frightful for stocksHow Warren Buffett beats the marketsBetter returns: More stocks or … [Read more...] about S&P 500 showing spooky numbers in October
S and p 500 historical returns
Nobody can say the stock market outlook these days isn't looking cloudy, but most investors appear to remain sunny. That in itself should be a moderately bullish sign, although nothing is certain, to be sure. "As we look to the second quarter and beyond, our crystal ball is as cloudy as ever when it comes to predicting short-term market movements, but we remain optimistic and think that double-digit percentage returns for the full year are achievable," said John Buckingham, chief investment officer at Al Frank Asset Management, which has $1.5 billion under management. He cautions, however, that investors have to be realistic about ongoing geopolitical issues as well as negative political catalysts in the U.S. that have been exacerbated by President Trump's firing last week of FBI Director James Comey, plus the fact that the markets haven't suffered much in the way of a pullback since the robust rally after the presidential election. Part of the market's relatively calm … [Read more...] about Can S&P 500 still deliver double digit gains this year?
Lithium stocks are having a tough 2018, following two years of partying like it was 1999. Shares of the world's largest lithium producer, Albemarle (NYSE: ALB), are in the red 25.7% this year through Friday, while the stocks of the industry's second-largest producer, Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile (NYSE: SQM), or SQM, and the other big player that's traded on a major U.S. stock exchange, FMC Corp. (NYSE: FMC), are down 19.4% and 15.9%, respectively. For context, the S&P 500 has returned 1% over this period.Here's what you should know.Lithium salt flats. Lithium-containing brine is pumped above ground into evaporation pools. Image source: Getty Images.Lithium oversupply and pricing concerns hit the group beginning in JanuaryAlbemarle, SQM, and FMC ended 2017 on a high note, with their stocks returning 50.2%, 114%, and 68.8%, respectively, for the year, versus the S&P 500's 20.5% return. This was on top of big gains the year before. The two-year stock party was driven by the … [Read more...] about Why the Big 3 Lithium Stocks Are Down 16% to 26% in 2018 — and What’s an Investor to Do?
Where do you put 3,500 camellias? How about the thousands of people who come to see them? For decades, that answer has been simple: Memorial Auditorium. This weekend, the venerable Sacramento venue will host the 94th annual Sacramento Camellia Show, the world's oldest and largest event of its kind. On the National Register of Historic Places, Memorial Auditorium has served as a wonderful and gracious home to the camellia show, Sacramento's celebration of its official flower, say show organizers. But upcoming renovations to the 90-year-old auditorium are expected to uproot the event for at least one year, maybe more. Of immediate concern, show organizers worry that there will be enough camellias this weekend to fill Memorial's exhibition space. "Please, everybody, bring camellias!" said co-chairman Julie Vierra. "After that hail on Monday, we'll need every camellia we can get." Vierra's own West Sacramento garden was hit hard by Monday's freak hailstorm. "It hailed for 45 minutes," she … [Read more...] about World’s largest and oldest camellia show returns to Memorial Auditorium — at least once more
In recent years, a lot of investor money has been flowing into index funds. Investors seem to love the low-cost nature of index fund investing, as well as the diversification and ease that comes with them. This certainly makes sense, but is it possible to make serious money by simply investing in index funds? The answer will surprise you. Here's a look at what would have happened if you had put money into an S&P 500 index fund in 1980 (38 years ago) and had simply reinvested your dividends along the way. Image source: Getty Images. What is an S&P 500 index fund? An S&P 500 index fund is an investment vehicle, either in mutual fund or exchange-traded fund (ETF) form, that invests in the 500 stocks that comprise the S&P 500 index, in market cap-weighted proportions. While fees vary, these tend to be extremely cheap ways to invest. As of this writing, S&P 500 ETFs can be found with expense ratios as low as 0.03%. This means that for every $10,000 you have … [Read more...] about Here’s What a $10,000 Investment in an S&P 500 Index Fund in 1980 Would Be Worth Today