How to predict the next market downturn

Is the market going to crash? Many financial pros will tell you that a reckoning of some kind is inevitable — it’s just a matter of when. Predicting the when is the hard part.

Trying to make sense of the market’s random walk may be a fool’s errand. Financial markets are inherently finicky beasts, after all, prone to bouts of volatility even during periods when the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.30% and S&P 500 Index SPX, -0.66% are ringing up strings of all-time highs.

To help spot warning signs during stretches like this, MarketWatch has created an interactive tool intended to be a sort of financial canary in the coal mine.

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