The Dow-S&P 500 Divergence


Financial sophisticates know that the Dow Jones Industrial Average is a bit of a joke: it’s only 30 stocks, and it’s not even an index. But for historical reasons it retains a grip on the public imagination that the S&P 500 has never approached.

Most of the time, this doesn’t matter a great deal: the Dow and the S&P move pretty much in line with each other. But today, with Dow component JP Morgan rising by $3.40 per share, the Dow is actually up, even as the markets generally are significantly down. I wonder: when was the last time there was a gap of over 100bp between the daily movements on the Dow and the S&P 500?

Update: Zubin Jelveh answers! Apparently it was July 18, 2002, when the S&P 500 fell 2.7%, but the Dow fell only 1.56%. And it happened again on September 13, 2002.

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