Stocks increase nearly 60% since March low Stocks post biggest rebound in 2009 since Great Depression - USATODAY.com NEW YORK Few analysts forecast this year's remarkable stock market rebound as major indexes were plunging to 12-year lows last March. Now, with most experts predicting the pace of stocks' gains will slow in 2010, there's reason to believe they will be proven correct. Despite fears early in the year about a potential financial system collapse, stocks managed to have their best year since 2003 on growing signs of recovery in what turned out to be Wall Street's biggest comeback since the Great Depression. Stocks began the dramatic turnaround in March after Citigroup and other big banks said they were making money again, and then climbed at a fairly steady pace as signs of an economic recovery from the Great Recession became more pronounced. Once it was clear a collapse wasn't going to happen, the Standard & Poor's 500 index roared back 64.8% from its early March low. For the full year, the index rose 23.5%, or 211.85 points, it's best showing since 2003. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 1,651.66, or 18.8% for the year. From its March 9 close, the Dow jumped 59.3%. Powered by the recovery in high-tech stocks, the Nasdaq ended 2009 with a gain of 696.12, or 43.9%. Tthe Nasdaq has surged 78.9% from its March low.