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InvestHub.com's
Finance Dictionary and Glossary of Investment Terms

Bear market  

Definition 1.

Any market in which prices exhibit a declining trend. For a prolonged period, usually falling by 20% or more.
 

Definition 2.

A market in which prices of a certain group of securities are falling or are expected to fall. Although figures can vary, a downturn of 15%-20% or more in multiple indexes (Dow or S&P 500) is considered an entry into a bear market.
 

Definition 3.

A prolonged period in which investment prices fall, accompanied by widespread pessimism. If the period of falling stock prices is short and immediately follows a period of rising stock prices, it is instead called a correction. Bear markets usually occur when the economy is in a recession and unemployment is high, or when inflation is rising quickly. The most famous bear market in U.S. history was the Great Depression of the 1930s. opposite of bull market.
 

Definition 4.

When stocks trend downward for a long period, it''s a ""bear"" market. Conversely, when stock prices have risen steadily over several months, experts call it a ""bull"" market. These terms were selected based on the way the two animals attack. When a bull rushes forward, he holds his head low and then gores upward with his horns. A bear, on the other hand, strikes downward with his paws.
 
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