The bull market just entered into its fourth year, doubling in price since the lows of March 2009.
While the 2008 financial crisis has been a hard memory to shake off (and in fact, we’re still dealing with the fallout in Europe), there have been significant improvements made in the past three years. As I mentioned last Monday, several key measures of the U.S. economy have gained substantial ground since 2009 as well.
Of course, the question on everyone’s mind is whether the bull market will continue. As for me, I just don’t see 2012 as being the year of the bear, especially considering how the market continues to “shrug off” bad news.
For example, the U.S. trade deficit ballooned to a record high in January, and wholesale inventories increased less than expected — but the major indices still moved forward.
If we were actually headed toward the bear market, this type of news could have sent indices tumbling, but instead the market closed up.
In this environment, equities are the place to be, and I fully expect 2012 to be another bull year.