I have to wonder, are we entering the ending phase of this cyclical bull?
For sometime now I've noticed the similarities between the `02-`07 cyclical bull and what we've experienced since March of last year. The one difference is that this time we've truncated the middle phase of the bull. I suspect that was a direct result of the massive liquidity Bernanke … and all central banks have pumped into the system.
Both bulls exhibited powerful moves out of the bottom followed by a 9% correction separating the second leg from the third. In the `02 – `07 bull we then entered a 2 year phase were the market ground higher. That phase is missing from the current bull.
What followed the `06 correction was a powerful runaway move into the February `07 top. That persistent rally skewed sentiment extremely bullish at the time. We saw the exact same thing develop as the market entered the runaway move out of the February 5th bottom. At it's peak sentiment had reached bullish levels exceeding what we saw at the top of the last bull market in the fall of `07.
In `07 the runaway move led to investor complacency and severely depressed put buying. The same thing happened at the recent top in April. Investors became terribly complacent. Protective put purchase fell off the chart. The market had no safety net under it. In that condition it was at risk for a crash if investors all tried to head for the door at the same time. They did, and we suffered a mini-crash in the spring of `07 and again in May.
In `07 the initial crash low was tested and broken followed by a 2b reversal.
Recently the S&P also broke to lower lows and bottomed with a 2b reversal.