Bear

Loading the player...

What is a 'Bear'

An investor who believes that a particular security or market is headed downward. Bears attempt to profit from a decline in prices. Bears are generally pessimistic about the state of a given market.

BREAKING DOWN 'Bear'

For example, if an investor were bearish on the S&P 500 they would attempt to profit from a decline in the broad market index. Bearish sentiment can be applied to all types of markets including commodity markets, stock markets and the bond market.

Although you often hear that the stock market is constantly in a state of flux as the bears and their optimistic counterparts, "bulls", are trying to take control, do remember that over the last 100 years or so the U.S. stock market has increased an average 11% a year. This means that every single long-term market bear has lost money.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Bear Market Rally

    A period in which prices of stocks increase during a bear market. ...
  2. Bull

    An investor who thinks the market, a specific security or an ...
  3. Bear Closing

    Purchasing a security, currency, or commodity in order to close ...
  4. Bear Position

    Alternate term for a short position in a financial security. ...
  5. Bear Fund

    A mutual fund designed to provide higher returns when the market ...
  6. Bear Squeeze

    A change in market conditions that forces pessimistic investors ...
Related Articles
  1. Options & Futures

    Bear Funds: A Bullish Stance On Bad Times

    Even if the market is in a decline your portfolio doesn't have to be.
  2. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Digging Deeper Into Bull And Bear Markets

    Discover why it's important to know the characteristics of the two types of market conditions.
  3. Economics

    Bear Market

    A financial market with declining asset prices fueled by investors’ pessimism, lack of confidence and negative expectations. While bear markets are partly based on actual investment performance, ...
  4. Investing

    Prospering In The Next Bear Market: Here's How

    Prepare to survive, and even prosper, in the impending bear market, by considering and putting into action the following four strategies.
  5. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Surviving Bear Country

    Stay calm, play dead and keep your eyes open for attractive valuations.
  6. Investing Basics

    How To Adjust Your Portfolio In A Bear Or Bull Market

    While investors shouldn’t feel compelled to change their portfolios radically overnight in reaction to the market's daily moves, small adjustments in the face of a bull or bear market could be ...
  7. Investing Basics

    Stocks Basics: The Bulls, The Bears And The Farm

    On Wall Street, the bulls and bears are in a constant struggle. If you haven't heard of these terms already, you undoubtedly will as you begin to invest. The Bulls A bull market is when everything ...
  8. Options & Futures

    Profiting In Bear And Bull Markets

    There are many ways to profit in both bear and bull markets. The key to success is using the tools for each market to their full advantage.
  9. Financial Advisors

    Preparing Your Clients for the Next Bear Market

    It has been almost six years since the last bear market, so it might be time for advisors to start preparing their clients for the inevitable downturn.
  10. Investing

    Timing a Short Sale

    The timing of a short sale is of critical importance, since stocks typically decline much faster than they advance. A sizeable gain in a stock over a multi-year period can be wiped out in a couple ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. Where did the bull and bear market get their names?

    First of all, let's remember that bears are sluggish and bulls spirited and burly. The terms are used to describe general ... Read Answer >>
  2. What are the signs of a bear market rally?

    Read about some of the signs of a bear market rally, an unpredictable bull movement that takes place in the middle of a stronger ... Read Answer >>
  3. How should young people invest in a bear market?

    Learn strategies young investors can implement during a bear market that present the greatest opportunity for long-term investment ... Read Answer >>
  4. What are common investing mistakes in bear markets?

    Learn why investing in a tumultuous market can be challenging even for the most experienced investors. Avoiding these common ... Read Answer >>
  5. How do you use put options to profit from a bear market?

    Learn how traders use put options in their trading strategies to remain profitable, even in a bear market. Everyday investors ... Read Answer >>
  6. Are we in a bull market or a bear market?

    A bull market is represented by a rising price trend, and a bear market is indicated by a falling price trend. Given this ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Cost Of Debt

    The effective rate that a company pays on its current debt. This can be measured in either before- or after-tax returns; ...
  2. Yield Curve

    A line that plots the interest rates, at a set point in time, of bonds having equal credit quality, but differing maturity ...
  3. Stop-Limit Order

    An order placed with a broker that combines the features of stop order with those of a limit order. A stop-limit order will ...
  4. Keynesian Economics

    An economic theory of total spending in the economy and its effects on output and inflation. Keynesian economics was developed ...
  5. Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications ...

    A member-owned cooperative that provides safe and secure financial transactions for its members. Established in 1973, the ...
  6. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles - GAAP

    The common set of accounting principles, standards and procedures that companies use to compile their financial statements. ...
Trading Center