Well, there you have it, all the doom, gloom, and despair you could ever imagine. These stories, some separated by seven decades, could easily be exchanged one for the other. The last 70 years have featured untold doom, gloom, world wars, terrorist attacks, Y2K, swine flu, bird flu, coronavirus, oil embargos, oil spills, increasing energy prices, nuclear meltdowns, poverty, recessions, inflation, housing bubbles, high unemployment, increasing taxes, corporate and municipal bankruptcies, hurricanes, floods, tsunamis, tornadoes, presidential assassinations, soaring national debt, threat of thermonuclear war, Communism, Nazism, Socialism, political incompetence, union extortion, corporate malfeasance, and 13 cataclysmic “end of the world” bear markets that nobody thought we could ever recover from.
Despite all of that, a hypothetical person who invested $10,000 into the S&P 500 on January 9th, 1950, and who never paid any attention to any of the media-hyped front-page-news events that unfolded in the world over the next 70 years, looked at their account value on March 19th, 2020, only to find that their one-time investment of $10,000 had grown to $1,410,648, averaging 7.30 percent per year (not even including dividends!).
This TIME is never really different. It’s simply an unpredictable pattern of economic fluctuation within the permanent historical uptrend, which the media reports as “the beginning of the end of the world,” in order to capture an ever-growing number of viewers and readers for their advertisers. It has always been this way. It will always be this way. This TIME is never really ever different.