General Chaos

How deep a hole?

The market closed down today. The winds say that it'll go lower still, with many companies due to report (lowered) profit (or increased loss) expectations for the current quarter.
Just by doing a little mathematical analysis and Kentucky windage, my guess is that it will go much lower.
How much lower? Look at the curve of the Dow Jones over the past 30 years (that link I gave for mathematical analysis above). Note the rate of change prior to 1995, the beginning of the Internet bubble. Now, project the curve out from that point. You can use calculus if you want.
My eyeball says the DJIA would be around 7000 if it were not for the bubble. It's around 8600 now, off its peak of over 11,000 from last year. So figure another 13% off today, or about a 26% drop from the top of the bubble overall.
Now, if you invested in 1971 (when the DJIA was around 1000), you're still ahead 700%–that's not too bad. Of course, I was 7 years old in 1971, so that bit of good news doesn't do me a whole lot of good.
Mind you, this is all conjecture, based on some simple mathematical rules of thumb. And I hope I'm wrong. But what's happened in the last month could be enough to pop what's left of the bubble.

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