By any measure it was a rough January for the stock markets. The S&P 500 lost 5 percent, marking its worst start to the year since January 2009, just before the market bottomed out in March of that year. According to the portfolio app OpenFolio, 93 percent of all investors lost money this January.
It wasn't just the drop, but how we got there that was so hard to take. The average daily spread between the S&P 500’s intraday high and intraday low was 2.3 percent in January. That's the highest for a month since September 2011 when it was 2.6 percent, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.
For the year, though we are only a month into 2016, the spread is tracking to be the greatest on an annual basis since 2008. In that disastrous year, the average daily spread was 2.8 percent.