DEFINITION of 'Depressed'

A state or condition of a market, product or security characterized by slumping prices, low volumes, and lack of buyers. "Depressed" usually refers to a prolonged period of low prices and activity. The term may also be used in the context of the broad economy, in which case it generally refers to recessionary conditions.


A period of depressed prices for a market or security usually occurs after prices have run up, peaked and subsequently declined for a prolonged period. Prices may remain in a depressed state for months, if not years, depending on the extent to which they had rallied beforehand and the amount of over-capacity or excess supply.

As an example, the U.S. housing market was in a depressed state for a number of years from 2008 onwards, as excessive real estate speculation led to a housing bubble in the preceding years. When the bubble burst, millions of homeowners were forced into foreclosure, creating an excess supply of homes that lasted for years.

  1. Indicator

    Indicators are statistics used to measure current conditions ...
  2. Business Cycle

    The fluctuations in economic activity that an economy experiences ...
  3. Depression

    A severe and prolonged downturn in economic activity. In economics, ...
  4. Market Sentiment

    The overall attitude of investors toward a particular security ...
  5. Economic Cycle

    The natural fluctuation of the economy between periods of expansion ...
  6. Deficit

    The amount by which a resource falls short of a mark, most often ...
Related Articles
  1. Fundamental Analysis

    How Influential Economists Changed Our History

    Find out how these five groundbreaking thinkers laid our financial foundations.
  2. Fundamental Analysis

    Where's The Market Headed Now?

    Whether up, down or sideways, learn about some of the factors that drive stock market moves.
  3. Credit & Loans

    The Lost Depression

    Many people don't know that a severe depression hit a decade before the Great Depression, and it didn't make it into most history books.
  4. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Recession: What Does It Mean To Investors?

    Understanding the business cycle and your own investment style can help you cope with an economic decline.
  5. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Survival Tips For A Stormy Market

    Learn which stocks to watch and which to avoid when the Dow starts to sink.
  6. Economics

    What Caused The Great Depression?

    Learn how government actions may have contributed to this major economic downturn.
  7. Options & Futures

    Market Bottom: Are We There Yet?

    No one rings a bell when the bear market's over, but that doesn't mean there's no way to predict a bottom.
  8. Fundamental Analysis

    Emerging Markets: Analyzing Colombia's GDP

    With a backdrop of armed rebels and drug cartels, the journey for the Colombian economy has been anything but easy.
  9. Investing

    How to Win More by Losing Less in Today’s Markets

    The further you fall, the harder it is to climb back up. It’s a universal truth that is painfully apparent in the investing world.
  10. Economics

    Is the U.S. Economy Ready for Liftoff?

    The Fed continues to delay normalizing rates, citing inflation concerns and “global economic and financial developments” in explaining its rationale.
  1. Who decides to print money in Canada?

    In Canada, new money comes from two places: the Bank of Canada (BOC) and chartered banks such as the Toronto Dominion Bank ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Who decides when to print money in India?

    The Reserve Bank of India, or RBI, manages currency in India. The bank's additional responsibilities include regulating the ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Is Japan an emerging market economy?

    Japan is not an emerging market economy. Emerging market economies are characterized by low per capita incomes, poor infrastructure ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How is the Federal Reserve audited?

    Contrary to conventional wisdom, the Federal Reserve is extensively audited. Politicians on the left and right of a populist ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Who decides when to print money in the US?

    The U.S. Treasury decides to print money in the United States as it owns and operates printing presses. However, the Federal ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. When has the United States run its largest trade deficits?

    In macroeconomics, balance of trade is one of the leading economic metrics that determines the trading relationship of a ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
  2. Normal Profit

    An economic condition occurring when the difference between a firm’s total revenue and total cost is equal to zero.
  3. Operating Cost

    Expenses associated with the maintenance and administration of a business on a day-to-day basis.
  4. Cost Of Funds

    The interest rate paid by financial institutions for the funds that they deploy in their business. The cost of funds is one ...
  5. Cost Accounting

    A type of accounting process that aims to capture a company's costs of production by assessing the input costs of each step ...
  6. Capitalized Cost

    An expense that is added to the cost basis of a fixed asset on a company's balance sheet. Capitalized Costs are incurred ...
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!