Wikinvest Wire

Volatility returns to equity markets

Thursday, January 22, 2009

You probably don't need me to tell you that equity markets have become increasingly volatile in just the last 52 hours, but I'm going to tell you anyway.
IMAGE Depending upon what happens over the next couple of hours (and the trend doesn't look good at the moment), the last three days of trading could be three of the four biggest daily moves since things sort of settled down last fall.

Looking back at that mid-September to late-November period, the average daily move was almost four percent. The bad news today is that the average move over the last three days now stands at 4.1 percent.

Fortunately, back in the fall, Friday was one of the calmest days of the week with an average move of just over two percent, generally upward. Of course, few Mondays were quiet back then due to the many and varied weekend crises. As a result, the average move was a whopping five percent with the direction decidedly down.



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