Paraskevidekatriaphobia is the fear of Friday the 13th, but investors should not be too frightened. Friday the 13th happens at least one to three times every year.
The last triple year was 2009, and the next triple year is 2012. The last Friday 13th in 2012 will be this July.
Historically, Friday the 13th tends to be a relatively calm day for the stock market, with average gains of only 0.2 percent or less.
In four of the last six instances, though, all three major averages finished down for the day. Should investors take this as a bad omen? Below is a look at how stocks traded on this superstitious day.
Dow since 1900:
- Average gain of 0.03 percent on Friday the 13th, and up 59 percent of the time
- Biggest Gain: 2.66 percent on Dec. 13, 1929
- Biggest Drop: -6.9 percent on Oct. 13, 1989
S&P since 1928:
- Average gain of 0.02 percent on Friday the 13th, and up 56 percent of the time
- Biggest gain: 3.34 percent was on Oct. 13, 2000
- Biggest drop: -6.11 percent was on Oct. 13, 1989
Nasdaq Composite since 1971:
- Average gain of 0.20 percent on Friday the 13th, and up 60 percent of the time
- Biggest gain: 7.87 percent in Oct. 13, 2000
- Biggest drop: -3.09 percent in Oct. 13, 1989
And here is a look at the unlucky 13 so far this year: