Choppy Market

DEFINITION of 'Choppy Market'

A stock market condition whereby prices swing up and down considerably but with no resulting overall price movement in either direction.

BREAKING DOWN 'Choppy Market'

The term is derived from the phrase choppy seas, where a boat will move a lot but not over any large distance as waves prevent it from moving any meaningful distance. The DJIA, for example, may start a six-month period at 10,500 and over the six months move all over the 10,000 to 11,000 range but end the period at around 10,500.