As a selling wave hit stocks Friday, traders chatted up a market factoid that appeared to lay the blame for the decline squarely on month end portfolio maneuvering.
They noted that stocks ended the last six months with a down day, six out of six times. But, stocks then traded higher more often than not when the new month began.
The Dow, for instance, traded positive four out of the last six times on the first trading day of the month. The Dow Jones industrial average fell on every final trading day of the month since November.