Wednesday, January 25, 2017

All Of The Important Dow Milestones In One Chart

As the Dow hits 20,000 for the first time, take a look back with this visual history of the index.


January 25, 2017

Dow 20,000.

Yes, 20,000 is just a number — a big, round number — but hitting major milestones such as this one provides an opportunity to reflect, take stock and consider history. To that end, below is a visual history of the Dow and its important milestones, in one chart.



Investors may feel as though they waited forever for the Dow DJIA, +0.78% to at last reach 20,000. (Certainly we at MarketWatch, and the financial media in general, were impatiently beating the #Dow20K drum pretty much since the Dow hit 19,000 in late November.)

But clocking in at 42 trading sessions, the rally from 19,000 to 20,000 is the Dow’s second-fastest 1,000-point advance to a milestone level, since the 59-session span between late March and early July 2007. The fastest-ever 1,000-point rally was from 10,000 to 11,000 in early 1999 over 24 sessions. (See the full list of trading sessions between 1,000-point milestones here.)

In the past, the index has struggled with major milestones for years. It first touched 1,000 in 1966 but didn’t close above that mark until November 1972. And the Dow first crossed 10,000 in 1999, but only really took up residence above that milestone in 2010.

With the market’s recent record-smashing velocity since Donald Trump won the presidential election, that history did not stop some on Wall Street from talking 21,000 before 20,000 was even in the books.

These 1,000-point moves for the Dow aren’t what they used to be — as the gauge has climbed higher over the years, the percentage change associated with any 1,000-point move has, of course, gotten progressively smaller.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of warnings and red flags to temper that 20K enthusiasm: widespread investor anxiety, Trump’s biting comments toward the U.S. dollar, that recent carnage in bonds and the potential upset that could come across assets if the 10-year yield continues to reach new heights. Then there’s MarketWatch columnist Brett Arends‘s description of Dow 20,000 as a big, fat trap.


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