E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
(Stock Exchange), a fall, or a speculator for a fall. To operate for a bear. To realise a profitable bear.
Bearing the market is using every effort to depress the price of stocks in order to buy it.
The arena of bears and bulls, i.e. the Stock Exchange.
Dr. Warton says the term bear came from the proverb of Selling the skin before you have caught the bear, and referred to those who entered into contracts in the South Sea Scheme to transfer stock at a stated price. (See BULL.)
So was the huntsman by the bear oppressed,
Whose hide he sold before he caught the beast.
Waller: Battle of the Summer Islands, c. ii.
A Bear account. A speculation in stocks on the chance of a fall in the price of the stock sold, with a view of buying it back at a lower price or receiving the difference. (See BULLS.)