Investors Feast While Bears Get Cooked

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As I ponder this year’s events with a notch-loosened belt after a belly-busting Thanksgiving gorging, I give thanks for my many blessings this year (see my last year’s Top 10). Investors in the stock market have had quite a feast in 2013 as well, while pessimistic bears have gotten cooked.

Just this month, stock indexes reached all time record highs (16,000 for the Dow Jones Industrial average and 1,800 for the S&P 500). Even the tech-heavy NASDAQ index surpassed 4,000 — a level not seen since 1999. How does this translate in percentage terms? Here’s what the stellar 2013 numbers looks like so far:

  • Dow Jones: +22.8 percent
  • S&P 500: +26.6 percent
  • NASDAQ: +34.5 percent

These results demolish the near 0.0 percent returns earned on the sidelines, sitting on cash. Also worth noting — these gains become even more impressive once you add dividends to the mix. To put these numbers into better perspective, it would take you more than a few decades of your lifetime to achieve this year’s stock gains, if your cash was invested at today’s CD and savings account rates.

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