Nervous investors have been peppered with headlines this week screaming the S&P 500 is down 20% from its 2011 high. According to some media outlets, this arbitrary 20% figure markets an official bear market.

However, stock exchange traded funds have rallied the past two days in the face of the news. The iShares S&P 500 (NYSEArca: IVV) is down 15.5% over the past three months.

The S&P 500 opened at 1090.18 Tuesday, which was below the 1090.88 level that marked a 20% correction from its April 29 peak of 1,363.61. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq were also dipping close to 20% off their highs. [Stock ETFs Falter on Recession Forecasts]

Although stock ETFs have bounced the past couple days, many investors remain wary of the market.

The problems over the late summer and fall months kept piling up, most notably the European debt drama and the global slowdown.

“Although the European debt crisis, the slowdown in emerging markets and concerns of a double-dip recession are still in people’s minds, few clients I spoke to believe that the legislative or executive branches of the U.S. government either understand or can successfully manage the domestic economy,” investment strategist Ben Warwick of Aspen Partners said, according to AdvisorOne.

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