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- John Stolzfus of Oppenheimer has the most bullish S&P 500 forecast for 2018, with a year-end price target of 3,000.
- He sees many of the positive drivers from 2017 continuing, such as slow-and-steady economic expansion, strong earnings growth and continued monetary accommodation.
With nearly every market expert bullish on stocks heading into 2018, it's tough to stand out. But John Stoltzfus has managed to do it.
The chief investment strategist at Oppenheimer just unveiled his year-end S&P 500 target of 3,000, which makes him the biggest bull on Wall Street.
That's a roughly 13% increase from current levels, which Stoltzfus says will result from a combination of factors that are all aligning at the right time. They include:
- The expectation of 2% to 2.5% long-term GDP growth, as well as a strong employment picture.
- Continued accommodative monetary policy. Although the Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates multiple times in 2018, Oppenheimer sees the steady pace and signaling ahead of time keeping the risk of disruption subdued.
- Modest inflation without signs of overheating. Stoltzfus points out that low inflation presents more near-term risk for bonds than equities.
- Market pessimists being won over, increasing the market's bullish base.
"Skeptic and bear capitulation appears to have just begun in the fourth quarter of 2017 and contributed to the number of this year’s equity benchmark record highs," said Stoltzfus. "We believe that it is early in this process and multiples could expand further than we currently anticipate should the capitulation gain momentum."
Here's a round-up of the other 2018 year-end S&P 500 targets on Wall Street, ordered from most to least bullish:
- Bank of Montreal — Brian Belski — Target: 2,950
- UBS — Keith Parker — Target: 2,900
- Credit Suisse — Jonathan Golub — Target: 2,875
- Jefferies — Sean Darby — Target: 2,855
- Deutsche Bank — Binky Chadha — Target: 2,850
- Goldman Sachs — David Kostin — Target: 2,850
- Bank of America — Savita Subramanian — Target: 2,800
- Canaccord — Tony Dwyer — Target: 2,800
- Morgan Stanley — Mike Wilson — Target: 2,750
- Scotiabank — Vincent Delisle — Target, 2,750
- Stifel Nicolaus — Barry Bannister — Target: 2,750
- Citigroup — Tobias Levkovich — Target: 2,675
- HSBC — Ben Laidler — Target: 2,650
- Goldman Sachs — David Kostin — Target: 2,500
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