During 2017, the stock market, as measured by the S&P 500 index, was up 21.82%. It was a great year, but there have been other years with higher returns. But something did happen in 2017 that’s never happened before (at least as far back as reliable data exists) – every month of the calendar year posted a positive return.
Although the stock market has never been up 12 straight months during the calendar year, it was up 12 months in a row once: the 12 months ending March 1936, right in the thick of the Great Depression. Increasing 12 months in a row is an impressive feat by itself, but it was also up during both November and December last year, bringing the run to 14 months in a row! As a matter of fact, since February of last year, October was the only down month — 21 of the past 22 months have all seen positive stock market returns. There hasn’t been any period of time even close to this, making the probability of a repeat performance in 2018 low.
Source: Bloomberg, Union Bank & Trust Company