The Great Recession gave way to a up-and-down recovery that celebrated its 10th birthday over the weekend, the Chicago Tribune reported.

A few of the bumps came close to the 20 percent drop that would signal a bear market. But it isn’t here yet. 

"It's been one bull run, but there have been stages to it," said Michael Cuggino, portfolio manager and president of Permanent Portfolio Family of Funds. "Because of that, it's been harder to kill off, and it's had a better run than you'd expect."

The bull market started March 9, 2009. Since then we’ve worried about Greece’s finances, Brexit, oil prices, China tariffs, U.S. debt, interest rates and an interesting U.S. political climate. In August, Standard and Poor’s took away the U.S. government’s “AAA” credit rating. The market wavered.

At the end of last year, many thought the bull market was over. But actions by the Fed and rising corporate profits kept the bull alive. 

"Over the last decade, we worked through risk after risk after risk," said Cuggino. "Even though U.S. growth was relatively anemic for several years, it was still [growing] when most of the world was not. We were the best house in a bad neighborhood."

In January, when we looked back at the performance of Iowa stocks for the past year, we found that the Iowa Index of stocks was up 103 percent at year-end 2018 compared with year-end 2008. By comparison, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 166 percent over the past 10 years, while the Nasdaq had a 321 percent gain. Casey’s General Stores turned in the best 10-year performance among the 21 Iowa-based companies in the Iowa Index, more than quadrupling its price with a 463 percent share price gain. To see that Business Record Insider article, click