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Dow 10,000
Should we welcome the rebound in the stock market?
 

A year after the Dow Jones Industrial Average last saw 10,000, “we’re banging on that door again,” said David Callaway in MarketWatch, but is this “sprint to Dow 10,000” a good thing? The “worst of the recession” just might be over, but earnings aren’t good, “Washington is in typical gridlock” on financial regulation, banks are still failing “at an alarming rate,” and unemployment is nearing 10 percent. At some point, a healthy “correction is inevitable.”

“So what?” said Brett Arends in The Wall Street Journal. The Dow first passed 10,000 a decade ago, and “since then we’ve passed it several more times—in both directions.” Yes, “headline numbers” like 10,000 can give the market a boost, but this time past the post we’ll be “only back to about Dow 7,500” in 1999 dollars, thanks to inflation. And stocks are actually “somewhat expensive” now, overall. “Dow 10,000 is no bargain, but it’s no bubble either.”

Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, said Bob O’Brien in Barron’s. If history is any guide, our “flirtation” with the “much talked-about Dow 10,000” could stay an “unrequited romance” for some time. In February 1966, for example, the Dow got as high as 995—but it didn’t cross 1,000 until Nov. 14, 1972.

 

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