Black Monday Anniversary: Superstitious Buyers Beware

Plus, a look at 30 stocks that survived Black Monday and how far they've come

Oct 18, 2017 at 4:55 PM
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This Thursday, Oct. 19, will mark the 30th anniversary of Black Monday -- when the stock market notoriously crashed in 1987. This week, we'll be publishing a handful of features in observance of the event. Yesterday, we kicked things off with a look at the stock market changes since Black Monday, and how the S&P 500 Index (SPX) tends to perform after major meltdowns. Today, we'll eye some of the notable stocks that survived that day, and identify the worst days of the year for stocks -- and which one is just around the corner.

Black Monday Survivors: Where Are They Now?

Below is a list of 30 stocks that were trading on Oct. 19, 1987, and are still trading today. The stocks are sorted by current market cap, and data is courtesy of Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White.

stocks black monday and now

As you can see, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) now has the biggest market cap of the stocks on our list, but on Black Monday, the company's $4.6 billion market cap was just 6% that of IBM Corp. (NYSE:IBM) -- the market-cap leader at the time, at $63 billion. UnitedHealth Group Inc (NYSE:UNH) has grown the most, going from market cap of about $100 million to $186.5 billion in 30 years.

worst days and months for spx crashes

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) -- now second in market cap -- suffered the worst of all stocks on our list, dropping just over 30% that day. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) and PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP) stocks suffered the least that day, the only two on our list that dropped by just single-digit percentage points.

Worst Days for Stocks?

As we mentioned in yesterday's article, the month of October has been pretty notorious for S&P crashes, with the index dropping at least 4% in one day 25 times during this month, going back to 1928.

Aside from October, only the month of September has seen more than 20 steep drops for the SPX. The month of December has generated the fewest S&P crashes, at just 4 in about 90 years.

As for days of the week, Monday has been the worst, with 31 crashes of at least 4% in a single day. Thursday has been the best day of the week, as far as avoiding steep drops, generating just 18 total.

worst days of month for stock crashes

The 17th day of the month has been the most prone to sharp S&P drops, historically, with eight since 1928. Meanwhile, the fifth and 21st of the month have seen seven one-day declines of at least 4%, and the 19th and 23rd are tied with six. The 30th has seen just one massive S&P drop.

The 1987 crash was on the 19th of October, and obviously a Monday, so the bearish stars seemed to have aligned that day, if you believe in omens and numerology and the like. While the 17th, 5th, 21st, and 19th days of October don't fall on one of those cursed Mondays this year, it should be noted that next week is Monday, October 23rd... Superstitious buyers beware.


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