In a recent article in The New York Times, financial writer Mark Hulbert re-examined how long it took stock investors to break even after the 80% losses of 1929 to mid-1932. Taking into account deflation, dividends, and the overall market, he concluded that the recovery back to break-even took 4.5 years, not the 25 years shown by historical stock charts.
Hulbert's conclusion: "None of this, of course, guarantees that stocks will have a quick recovery from the market decline that began in October 2007. But it suggests that the historical record isn't as bleak as it looks." Please click here for Hulbert's article.