Goldman Sachs predicts stocks will rise 11 percent during the rest of the year, thanks to improved profits.
That would give the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index a gain of 15 percent for the second half of the year, to 1,060, the market’s biggest second-half rally since 1982.
The 1,060 prediction represents a 13 percent increase from Goldman’s previous forecast of 940.
As for earnings, many companies reported strong figures last week.
“You saw company after company either raise guidance or at least guide to the higher-end of the previous range,” David Kostin, Goldman’s chief U.S. investments strategist, told Bloomberg.
“The early reporting companies are often interesting barometers for what’s likely to take place.”
Kostin is now tied for the second-highest S&P 500 forecast, with Deutsche Bank’s Binky Chadha, among 10 Wall Street strategists surveyed by Bloomberg.
Thomas Lee of JPMorgan Chase’s is the No. 1 bull with a year-end forecast of 1,100, according to the latest survey, conducted July 13.
As for Kostin, he lifted his rating on financial services firms to overweight from neutral.
“Many of the large-cap banks exceeded analyst expectations due to strong capital markets and mortgage refinancing activity,” he says.
“We expect these sources of earnings strength to continue.”
Not everyone is bullish.
David Hefty, principal of Cornerstone Wealth Management, tells CNBC we’re headed for a 10-year bear market.
“Right now, being bearish is nothing more than being realistic with what’s going on around us,” he says.
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