The only thing that scares a bull (market) is a bear.
When people speak of a "bear market," they mean a period of months or years during which the stock market declines by 15% or more. We haven't heard much about bear markets in the last few years, because the U.S. stock market has been performing so well (a "bull" market). For almost a decade, the market has enjoyed an unprecedented period of rising prices, hefty profits and general excitement which has, for the most part, kept the bears hiding in their caves. Still, recent declines have led some analysts to predict that we could be entering a bear market. Unfortunately, many investors (even those who have been in the market for ten years or more) lack the perspective that comes from experiencing an extended down period in stocks.
Welcome to the Bear's Cave, where you will discover some of the principles of bear markets, understand why you should be prepared for them and learn how you can spare yourself the worst of stock market declines.