In 1999, James Glassman and Kevin Hassett—two men with actual academic credentials—published the most hilariously wrong investment book of all time, entitled, quite hopefully, "Dow 36,000." (Highly recommended reading for humor value!) The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed on Dec. 31, 1999 at 11,497—but the authors, for a variety of reasons much too complicated for you to appreciate, postulated that it could hit 36,000 within "between three and five years."
Their five year prediction: +300%
Actual five year outcome: -10%
So what did the authors of that book do? Flee the country? Retire in shame? Give all their remaining assets to those investors unfortunate enough to have followed their advice? Ha, no. James Glassman is still writing op-eds and waiting for his prediction to come true. Could be soon!
Today [FOURTEEN FUCKING YEARS AFTER THE BOOK'S PUBLICATION], the far edge of that [3-5 YEAR] time frame is clearly in reach. From its low of 6,547 on March 9, 2009, the Dow has risen 117 percent. Another 117 percent in four years would put it at 31,022, just 16 percentage points shy of the magic number.
Hey, if the stock market spends the next four years magically repeating one of biggest rallies in the past 85 years, it could almost make a prediction James Glassman made fourteen years ago come true, just a decade late. Use caution, though: you don't want to get too invested in stocks and miss out on all the gold and diamonds that may come raining down from the sky for unexplained reasons over the next three to five years.