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The Efficient Market Theory states that it is impossible to "beat the market" because share prices always incorporate and reflect all relevant information as soon as it becomes available. Implicit in this theory is the condition that all market participants receive and act on all relevant information at the same time. Of course, this notion is silly and is not true.

The current bull market celebrated its fifth birthday earlier this week and brings up the question as to how long it will last. In order to answer this question, we would need to know when the next bear market begins. VectorVest did it in 2007. Can we do it again? A bear market is defined as a 20% drop in a major index, e.g., DJIA or SPX, which lasts at least two months. The last bear market began on October 10, 2007 when the DJIA and SPX closed at bull market highs. The Price of VectorVest’s Market Index Composite closed at an all-time high of $31.44 on July 13, 2007; then it hit an intraday high of $31.84 on October 11, 2007. VectorVest issued a Confirmed Down (C/Dn) signal on November 1, 2007 and I wrote an essay on Contra ETFs on November 2, 2007.

The Major Indexes began the week modestly lower Monday as concerns over the global economy deepened following a weak trade report out of China and lukewarm growth in Japan. The Dow dipped 0.2%, while the S&P 500 lost a meager 0.05% and Nasdaq lost a slight 0.04%.

Stock prices got punished in the first session of the week as tensions between Russia and Ukraine escalated. The Dow faltered by 0.9%, while both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq lost 0.7%. Geopolitical unrest dissipated Tuesday after Russia pulled troops back from the Ukrainian border and investors celebrated by going on a buying spree sending the Major Indexes into record territory.
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