Client Concerns: Volatility

How can I protect my investments from market volatility?

  • 74% of U.S. investors 40 and older are concerned about a stock market correction.*

  • Even with stock market risk concerns high, 69% of investors said their investment vehicles were subject to stock market volatility.*

  • 59% of employed investors said a major stock market drop would inhibit their ability to retire when they wanted, and 25% of those already in retirement said it would disrupt their retirement.*

We can’t predict the market. But volatility doesn’t need to keep you up at night … not if you’re prepared. And if your clients aren’t there yet, we can work with you to help them get there.

Market math doesn’t lie.

Buy-and-hold investments can leave your clients vulnerable to harsh declines they may not have the time or risk capacity to handle.

Bear Market Facts


Between 1929 and 2022 there have been 17 bear markets, defined as those periods when the S&P 500 has fallen at least 20%.


The average bear market slashed almost 34.8% from stock prices. Omit the ’29 crash, when values declined 87%, and the result is still an average loss of 29.7%.


On average, a new bear market begins every 5.8 years, with an average duration of 16.6 months. Omitting the distortion of the 1929 crash, the average time lost making up bear markets (zero earnings): 3.4 years.

Mathematics of declines and gains

Amount of market decline Gain needed to break even
-5% 5.3%
-10% 11.1%
-25% 33.3%
-33.3% 50%
-50% 100%
-75% 300%
-90% 900%
Bear Market Duration in months % of decline Years needed to break even
Sept '29–June '32 33 86.7 25.2
July '33–Mar '35 20 33.9 2.3
Mar '37–Mar '38 12 54.5 8.8
Nov '38–Apr '42 41 45.8 6.4
May '46–Mar '48 22 28.1 4.1
Aug '56–Oct '57 14 21.6 2.1
Dec '61–June '62 6 28.0 1.8
Feb '66–Oct '66 8 22.2 1.4
Nov '68–May '70 18 36.1 3.3
Jan '73–Oct '74 21 48.2 7.6
Nov '80–Aug '82 21 27.1 2.1
Aug '87–Dec '87 4 33.5 1.9
July '90–Oct '90 3 19.9 0.6
Mar '00–Oct '02 31 49.2 4.7
Oct '07–Mar '09 17 56.8 3.0
Feb '20-Aug '20 6 33.9 0.4
Jan '22- ? 25.4 ?

Source: Flexible Plan Investments Research

Manage market volatility with dynamic risk management and strategic diversification

We offer several categories of strategies that place dynamic risk management first and provide your clients the flexibility to react to current market conditions. Learn more about how dynamic risk management and strategic diversification—the foundation of our strategies and approach to investing—can help your clients survive and thrive, even in a volatile market.

More about dynamic risk management and how to build a portfolio for all market environments


All-Terrain: ETF & mutual fund strategies

The key to managing market volatility is building an investment portfolio designed to perform in all market environments.

All-Terrain Flyer PDF


Active management 101

Buy-and-hold investing can be deadly for clients. Learn how active management places “risk management first” and helps address market and behavioral conditions that make it hard for clients to stick to their investment plans.

Learn more


The role of gold in investment portfolios

Adding gold to an investment portfolio can help investors manage “boom and bust” volatility and global systemic risk—but how much is enough?

Download the white paper

How do I save enough for retirement?

Learn more


Financial concerns your clients are facing—and how you can help

Learn more


Will I outlive my savings?

Learn more

*Source: Michael S. Fischer, “Investors Worried About Market Downturn: Survey,” ThinkAdvisor, Jan. 30, 2018,