With a disappointing finish on Thursday, the stock market closed what was by some measures its worst month in two years. Over five dismal weeks, Facebook fizzled, a debt crisis in Europe loomed, and nobody was in the mood to buy.
The Dow Jones industrial average on Tuesday reclaimed the last of the ground it held before the carnage of the Great Recession %u2014 bailouts, bank failures, layoffs by the million and a stock market plunge that cut retirement savings in half. The Dow closed above 13,000 for the first time since May 19, 2008, almost four months before the fall of the Lehman Brothers investment bank triggered the worst of the financial crisis.
Taking note of the Dow's progress, The Wall Street Journal recently called its performance "eerie ... calm ... too quiet." Indeed, if things keep going at the rate they have been going so far, we're on track for the stock markets to gain more than 50% this year. Dow 18,000, anyone?