With a little under an hour left in trading, the S&P 500 appears to be on its way to close lower by more than 1% today. If it closes here it would mark the 5th time this year that the index has fallen by more than 1% in a given day.
Mathematically, as the index climbs, 1% declines represent larger and larger point totals. The Dow is down by more than 200 points today, and that headline number is likely to grab some attention among retail investors. However 1% declines are fairly frequent in any given year. Between 1990 and 2012, we’ve averaged 32 one percent declines per year. This year, we’re actually a little below the average pace.