Good times for Dhaka Stock Exchange are always short-lived.
Take the present day story. Its index rose 110 points on October 15, the highest in the outgoing month. But investors got little time to cheer up. The index fell 40 points the next trading day. And the fall continued for the next several consecutive days, turning the good time of October 15 sour.
Thus, the fall has become greater than the rise in the outgoing month.
The index rose only 185 points in six days until Monday. But it fell 432 points in 13 trading days. The net result is unpleasant for the investors. The index fell 250 points to finish 19 trading days, resulting in a decrease of market capital over Tk14,000 crore.
The stock market began the year with a short-term rally that took the index from 5,250 to 5,950 within one month until the last week of January.
But in the next nine months, it lost 1,322 points. The index lost double the gains it had based on an economic optimism when the present government started to continue steering the economy for the third consecutive term.
The behaviour of our share market may be likened to a childhood school math problem: the monkey and the slippery pole.
The story goes like: "A monkey is trying to reach the top of a slippery pole. When it climbs up three feet in three seconds, it slips down two feet in the next one second. If the pole is 12 feet tall, how much time does the monkey need to reach the top?"
The pole our stock market needs to climb up seems more slippery than the monkey's. But we pray for the bull, not the monkey, to climb up the slippery pole.
In past, we saw two abnormal rises of the market. Both times the corrupt pushed the bull to reach the top of the slippery pole. But the consequence was disastrous on both occasions.
In 1996, the stock market experienced its first brutal crash. It took more than a decade to recover the shock.
The market got healthier gradually with index reaching the highest record of around 9,000 points. The bullish market crashed and its index decreased to only 3,400 level, sending a severe blow to numerous investors who lost their capital.
Reeling from the shock, the market started to recover slowly. It reached 6,336 points in November 2017, the highest in recent years after the last crash.
But again, the good time for our stock market was short-lived. The index started falling. On Monday, it stood at only 4,700, lowest in the last three years.
Thanks to the teachers, many of us were successful to resolve the math problem and find the monkey at the top of the slippery pole. No corruption there to either push up or down the monkey in its struggle.
But the situation is different in the capital market. Manipulators and unseen evil forces are always active in the market.
They always keep fooling laymen and even sophisticated plain vanilla analysts unethically and in many cases illegally. They push buttons that help some events happen, igniting the market direction as they want though it is not always manageable to themselves even, but they are always active.
But no remarkable action was taken against the manipulators. In such a situation, no government measures taken in recent years were able to prop up the capital market. And the confidence of investors in the market keeps eroding.
Therefore, nobody knows for sure when the index of our stock market will reach the level expected by investors. The stock market is not the old school math of the monkey and the slippery pole.