Forecast came true

Reasons U.S. stocks may see a 10%-20% correction by July
24 february 2015

Market has mojo to overcome risks for another banner year

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Risks abound but it will take a lot more than a strong dollar, a hawkish Fed, and Greece to tame this stock market bull.

1. Business cycle: The current business cycle is 67-month-old, prompting worries that it is soon to expire and lead to a recession. But given that the U.S. economy is still performing at below potential and the typical signs of imbalances aren't apparent, the current cycle will remain intact for now.

2. Strong U.S. dollar: A firm dollar hurts U.S. exports and weakens American products’ competitiveness but it alone won't trigger a recession or a bear market.

3. The Federal Reserve: The Fed turning hawkish is a worry but given the current composition of the Fed, the possibility of an ill-timed interest rate hike is limited.

4. Weak Oil: Lower oil prices is more of a boon than a bane as less money spent on gas and fuel will mean more cash for consumers and businesses.

5. Earnings: “This is a serious problem,” said Kostohryz. The S&P 500 earnings per share risk is flat to negative in 2015 and PE ratios are peaking, limiting the market’s upside.

6. Valuation: Although some experts believe the market is overvalued based on the “Shiller PE10,” the indicator isn't foolproof. “PE ratios are at levels that have historically served as a peak in valuations, but aren't yet at levels that can be considered to constitute a ‘bubble.’”

7. Greece: Investors are underestimating the possibility of a negative outcome in Greece’s debt crisis. But the Eurozone is sufficiently prepared to deal with any fallouts.

8. Ukraine: The West and Russia won't go to war over Ukraine. The situation in the Eastern European country may deteriorate in the coming months but it will have limited impact on U.S. markets.

9. China: The Asian powerhouse is slowing but the Chinese government is expected to deploy aggressive fiscal and monetary measures to prevent a “hard-landing.”

10. Geopolitical instability: Oil-dependent regimes such as Venezuela are likely to face greater instability while rising Muslim extremism in the Middle East could lead to political and social upheaval in the region.

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