Are you ALL-IN for 2014? - Real Time Insight

By John Blank,

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The end of 2013 is here. The 2014 calendar year begins shortly.  We know stock markets look out 6-12-18 months on future earnings outlooks for guidance.  That means it is time for each of us to choose a target for the year-end 2014 on the S&P 500.

To kicks things off,  sell-side equity teams have been issuing year-end forecasts.  Last year, as a group, they were bullish.  But they were bullish in a modest, analytic sort of way.  Nearly every sell-side shop missed the "Raging Bull" market that showed up in 2013.  

The respected JP Morgan Chief U.S. Equity Strategist Thomas Lee rolled out his 2014 forecasts with  a year-end target of 2,075 for the S&P 500 - one of the most bullish calls out there.

Lee says the S&P 500 index could gain another +20% in 2014. 

To him, the current bull market is acting like a "classic" secular bull market, which is now in its sixth year, and which has historically been very strong.  A classic secular bull market is defined as one in which strong investor sentiment drives prices higher. He says the anecdotal evidence has been pointing to record highs on investor sentiment.

He bases this S&P 500 call on 15.7 times 2015 earnings per share of $132. Maybe that seems like a reach? But Lee argues investors are paying 24.3 times for a high-grade bond, 16.6 times for a high-yield bond, and 35 times for a U.S. 10-year bond.

My RTI questions:  What is YOUR Year-End 2014 Forecast and Stock Market Reasoning on the S&P 500?  Are you ALL-IN for a bullish 2014?

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing Stocks
Referenced Stocks: BOFI , BONT , GMK

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