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The S&P 500 is officially in a bear market. Here’s what you need to know.

The benchmark S&P 500 stock index fell into what investors call a bear market. If you’re just logging on or watching your retirement savings dwindle, here’s what you need to know about grizzly decline.

What is a bear market?

Stocks enter a bear market when widely followed indexes such as the S&P 500 or the Dow Jones Industrial Average fall 20% from their highs. There is nothing official about the determination. The designation is an abbreviated way for Wall Street to mark when markets have fallen. It also gives investors a moment to reflect on how the current action in the markets compares to previous declines.

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Post expires at 11:31pm on Thursday June 23rd, 2022