In the stock market, why is it that sometimes stocks fall when times are good? There are a few reasons for that.
The Dow isn't one thing - it's merely the sum total of 30 different stocks with 30 different stories. Sometimes all those stocks are affected in more or less than the same way by whatever is going on. That's when it does seem like a single number telling a single story.
But some companies may suffer from stuff that seems superficially good. For example, a strong dollar reflects global confidence in the U.S. economy, but it also makes it more difficult to make a profit selling overseas, so for major exports a strong dollar is bad news.
And let's not forget, your stock doesn't move rationally according to measurable events. It moves willy-nilly according to the whims and fears and beliefs of a bunch of other shareholders.
One of the scariest things about becoming an adult is how little finance has to do with arithmetic.
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