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Santoli: This week marks a lost year for stocks

NYSE after hours
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It's been just about a year since stocks last hit a record high. And it's hard to find anyone who's in a mood to celebrate the anniversary.

Bullish investors are left with little more than "It could've been worse," while the bearish crowd huffs, "It should have been worse."

The Standard & Poor's 500 is down just 3.9 percent from its closing high of 2,130 last May 21, not counting about 2 percent in dividends. Two waves of heavy selling took the index down by as much as 14 percent from that record level by early February, before the rebound carried it to within 2 percent of the old peak a month ago.

Corporate profits have been in decline, sliding in each of the last four quarters. At the time of the market's record high, the projection for S&P 500 profits over the next 12 months was $125.37 a share. They've fallen short of that by more than 7 percent, thanks largely to energy, industrials and financials.