As we said yesterday, the first quarter of 2016 was a roller coaster ride for the markets. The S&P 500 index recorded 26 moves in either direction of 1 percent or more, in either direction, from one day’s close to the next during the quarter. That's double the average number and the sixth most ever.
Does that mean anything for the rest of the year? If history is a guide, we could be in for a huge move over the remainder of the year. The S&P 500 has had five years with similar volatility to what we've seen so far this year, all since 2000. And all five ended with a big change in the market.
The funny thing is, during three of those years — 2000, 2001 and 2008 — the S&P 500 notched double-digit declines. But in 2003 and 2009, the S&P 500 ended up recording a nearly 25 percent gain.