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Examining the unanswerable question: Dead-cat bounce or a market bottom?


On thing’s for certain: Last week’s volatile stock-market action was a dead-cat bounce. Or a clear bottom. Or something in between. Or none of the above.

Does that help? Of course not. Truth is, nobody has a clue. But that didn’t stop Ben Carlson, portfolio manager at Ritholtz Wealth Management, from taking a deep dive into the numbers in search of some helpful data nuggets that could prove useful as investors mull their next moves.

“This type of move has precedent,” he wrote in a blog post Sunday. “Many of histories [sic] great crashes have exhibited head-fake rallies that offered investors a false sense of hope that proved to be fleeting.”

He used this chart of the dot-com implosion as an example:

As you can see, the bear…


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