With tomorrow being Friday the 13th, we looked at how the S&P 500 has performed on this day over time. Historically, the “cursed” day has not had much of an impact on the market. In fact, going all the way back to 1928, the S&P has actually performed slightly better when the 13th falls on a Friday (+0.01%) than it has when the 13th falls on all other weekdays (-0.02%). Relative to all other Fridays, though, market returns on Friday the 13th are weaker as the S&P 500’s average Friday performance over time has been a gain of 0.05% (table below).
The chart below shows the S&P 500’s return on all Friday the 13ths since 2009. Judging by the results, it would appear as though investors have become more superstitious as the S&P 500 has averaged a decline of 0.14% with gains just 44% if the time. The worst Friday the 13th during this period came in April 2012 when the S&P 500 declined 1.25%, while the biggest gain was exactly three months later on 7/13/2012 (1.65%). While the overall returns of the S&P 500 on Friday the 13th since 2009 have been a bit weaker than average, we would be more concerned with seeing a black cat or walking under a ladder than seeing any catastrophic market change on this historically unlucky day.