January Barometer bodes ill for this year's stock markets

US stocks started the year in sullen form, with the S&P 500 closing down 2.5 per cent in January.

5th February, 2005

US stocks started the year in sullen form, with the S&P 500 closing down 2.5 per cent in January. Big deal, you may shrug - that's hardly critical and considering the bullish end to 2004 (up 9 per cent from the beginning of November) it's a mere blip on an otherwise healthy horizon.

Maybe not. There's an old Wall Street adage which states that “as goes January, so goes the rest of the year'‘. Known as the...

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