NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Since we find ourselves at all-time highs, as measured by the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500, it may be useful to take a step back and survey our situation.
We've certainly come a long way since the dark days of March 2009, but are these sensational -- and very much sensationalized -- data points clouding your vision of what the future may hold?
Everyone knows the stock market has more than doubled over the past five years. That fact gets a lot of attention in the financial media. Depending on how that information is delivered, though, it can be seen as a harbinger that the only direction to go from here must be down -- and quickly. However, I'm not convinced. I think we go higher still from here.
But first, the data. The market has more than doubled over the past five years, got it. But what perspective can really be gleaned by measuring from the bottom? What if we measure from both previous troughs and peaks?
Most notably, let's look at how the market has fared since the previous two cycles -- we had a peak in 2000, a trough in 2002; another peak in 2007, and the aforementioned trough in 2009. How much do you think the market has returned, annually, since its previous peak in 2007?
^SPX data by YCharts
About 3% annually for both the Dow and S&P 500.
Now let's measure from the prior peak in 2000 for a trailing 14-year look.