Historical Market Trends Bode Well for Spring

Since 2000, April has been a good month for stocks.

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MarketWatch's top headline this morning, "Bamboozling the Bulls?" questions whether we've entered a bull market--if this rally will last longer than a few weeks. The verdict leans "no" on grounds that "this rally looks dangerously similar to each of the previous bear-market rallies that have failed over the last year." On the other hand, the case for a continuous rally is heavily reliant on investors' belief that the stimulus will help the market turn a corner.

But here's some encouraging research that reveals April has the leading average percentage return for the S&P 500 (a 1.46 percent average gain since the beginning of this decade). The second-strongest month is May.

Still, this bear market so far has proven to be different than any other...so take this data with a grain of salt.