Nest Egg Briefs: Introducing alternative terms to describe stock levels

The recent stock market declines have been nerve-wracking. As of this writing, we have learned that the S&P 500 is in “bear market” territory, the term used to refer to a loss of more than 20% from the index’s previous high. We have also learned that a “bear market” is worse than a “market correction,” which is considered to be a drop of only 10%. I have not been able to identify the provenance of these terms, but they seem to resonate well with the media because they are being used so ubiquitously.

In the midst of this period of deep investor fear, I thought I’d inject some levity by coming up with a few more terms that we can use to refer to other levels of market declines that provide more color than simply citing numbers.

  • -10%: Market Correction
  • -20%: Bear Market
  • -30%: Market Tsunami
  • -40%: Tasmanian Devil Market
  • -50%: Market Bloodbath
  • -60%: Tyrannosaurus Market
  • -70%: Market Apocalypse
  • -80%: Zombie Market

Let’s also not forget market gains. There ought to be some terms we can use besides the well-worn expression “bull market.”

  • +10%: Market Advancement
  • +20%: Bull Market
  • +30%: Market Exultation
  • +40%: Elephant Market
  • +50%: Market Triumph
  • +60%: Blue Whale Market
  • +70%: Market Bliss
  • +80%: Biggest & Most Powerful Animal Ever Market

So there you have it. We may be on the verge of a market tsunami at the moment, but I’m confident that over the longer term, a market triumph will be in the cards.

Los Altos resident Artie Green is a Certified Financial Planner and principal at Cognizant Wealth Advisors. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit

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