almost 3 years ago • 1 min
This year’s 10% gain in US stocks has pushed the benchmark S&P 500 index above Wall Street’s forecast for the end of 2021, suggesting either the market will struggle to gain more from here or strategists will have to play catch-up and increase their projections.
As the chart shows, the S&P 500 (in blue) has risen to 4,128, breaching the 4,100 median forecast of 22 strategists polled by Bloomberg (the horizontal pink line).
Estimates for where the index will end the year range from Cantor Fitzgerald at the top end with 4,400 to Bank of America and Stifel Nicolaus at the bottom with 3,800.
If US stocks keep climbing, Wall Street’s finest are likely to nudge their projections higher to adjust for the new reality. After all, they’ve already brought their median end-2021 forecast up from 3,800 over the past six months.
Still, the reticence shown by these market strategists – who set their targets based on top-down macro trends rather than the bottom-up, single-stock focus of analysts – suggests US stocks might be in for a tougher ride following four straight quarters of gains.
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