At its current level, the S&P 500 Financials sector has entered a new bear market (a 20% decline that was preceded by a rally of at least 20%). Below we highlight performance over various time periods for the S&P 500 and its ten sectors. As shown, Materials, Energy, Industrials, and Consumer Discretionary are all also dangerously close to bear market levels. The S&P 500 is down 15.73% from its bull market high. Unsurprisingly, it's the defensive sectors that have held up the best since the market peaked on April 23rd, if declines of 9% to 14% can be charecterized as holding up.
If we go back to the date of the S&P 500's all-time high on October 9th, 2007, the index is down 34.46%. The Financial sector has been by far the worst since then with a decline of 62.09%, even though it has recovered by 118% since March 9th, 2009. The Consumer Staples sector is down the least since 10/9/07 at -9.46%. Since the March 2009 lows, the S&P 500 is now up just 51.62%, off from +79.92% on April 23rd. Only Telecom has done worse than the Energy sector since the March 2009 lows.
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