A Look At The January Barometer

The January Barometer is a fairly famous study from the Stock Traders Almanac. It says that “as goes January, so goes the year”. In other words, a positive January will typically lead to a positive year, while a negative January can be a warning. Let’s look at how the SPX has done for the remaining 11 months of the year based on how January performed.

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The numbers show that in years that January has done well, the rest of the year has typically fared well also. Below is a profit curve.

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That is a nicely steady upslope. Now let’s look at how Feb-Dec has done after a down January.

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Not as many instances, but there does not appear to be the same kind of bullish tendency here. More of a crapshoot. Below is a curve.

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Certainly not a chart to trade off of. So it would have been nice if January finished positive. But it is not a sign of impending doom. Just that we don’t have the kind of momentum that would be preferable.


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