Archives For S&P 500 Index History

January’s -8.43% total return for the S&P 500 Index was the worst in the history of the index*.

I ranked the ten worst Januarys in the S&P’s history:

10 Worst Januarys in S&P History

This year’s January return was the worst by far. But, that’s just part of the story. Take a look at the next graphic, which shows the annual return that followed the worst Januarys. As you can see, it doesn’t look too good:

10 Worst Januarys in S&P History (and what followed)

Of the nine other worst Januarys, only three of them had a positive return for the entire year. Now before you go and sell everything, keep in mind that I ranked the thirty worst Januarys and 14 of them had positive returns for the year.

If you’re interested, you can read some other posts I put together on this topic:

The 50 Worst Months in S&P History and What Followed

The 50 Best Months in S&P History and What Followed

Dollar-Cost-Averaging Your Way Through the Depression

* The S&P 500 was created in February 1957. Prior to that, it was composed of 90 stocks.

UPDATE: I forgot to mention that I found this list in the Appendix of Jeremy Siegel’s The Future for Investors*. The companies are ranked in order of their return over the years, according to Siegel’s findings.

Here is the list of the original stocks in the S&P 500 Index, which began it’s existence as a 500-stock index on March 4, 1957.

Some interesting findings:

12 – Sugar Companies
4 – Cigar Companies (at least there are 4 companies with the word “Cigar” in their name)
Some companies like Cream of Wheat that are now just brands of a larger company.

The Original S&P 500 Index: Continue Reading…