Comparing Crashes: This One's Worse Than ’87

With today’s further decline–as I write this, the Nasdaq Composite is down another 86 points, or 5.2 percent, to 1,559–the index has tumbled 45 percent since peaking at 2,859 last Halloween. I think we can all agree that a 45 percent decline qualifies as a market crash, can’t we?

In fact, this decline is actually worse than the roughly 36 percent decline on the Nasdaq from peak to trough in 1987, but not nearly so bad as the 78 percent nightmare from 5,048 on March 10, 2000 to 1,114 on Oct. 9, 2002.

Still, it is startling that the current crisis is now worse–considerably worse, in fact–than what happened in 1987. And we’re hardly out of the woods. Next week, earnings season begins in earnest, and it is not going to be pretty.

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