1. Money
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

What is a Bear Market?

Definition and Duration



A bear market is an extended period of time where investment security prices are generally declining. Most commonly, the term bear market describes a negative environment for stocks but the term can also refer to other investment securities, such as bonds or commodities.


The duration of a bear market is the length of time that the period of generally declining prices lasts. Historically bear market durations have ranged from approximately 3 months up to more than 3 years. Most bear market durations are longer than 1 year but shorter than 2 years.

See also bull market.

  1. About.com
  2. Money
  3. Mutual Funds
  4. Mutual Fund Glossary
  5. Bear Market - What is a Bear Market

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.