With the S&P 500 poised for an all-time closing high today, bulls are breathing a sigh of relief after what seems like forever since the S&P 500’s last record close. The reality is that the last record closing high for the S&P 500 was just 23 trading days ago. The chart below shows prior streaks for the S&P 500 where the index had consecutive closes without a new all-time high since April 2013 when the S&P 500 made its first record closing high for the current bull market. Shortly before the current streak, the S&P 500 went nearly twice as long without closing at a new high, and then in the period leading up to last November’s election, the length of time without a new high was just about triple the current streak. As if that wasn’t bad enough, before that streak from the middle of last year, we all remember the 285 trading day stretch from May 2015 through July 2016.
All in all, there have been eleven other streaks in the last ~4 years that were about as long or longer than the current streak. This streak may have seemed ‘long,” but that’s more indicative of investors potentially feeling entitled to gains than anything else.
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