Piper Jaffray's Johnson: Stocks Might Endure 17 Percent Correction in 2014

Thursday, 02 Jan 2014 07:01 AM

By Dan Weil

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Stocks will rise again next year, but not without suffering a major correction along the way, according to Craig Johnson, technical market strategist at Piper Jaffray.

The correction will be dictated by seasonal factors, specifically mid-term congressional elections, he writes in a commentary obtained by CNBC. Since 1930, market corrections have averaged 17 percent in mid-term years, Johnson explains.

"We believe that this pullback will unfold post the achievement of our next price objective of 2,000 on the SPX [Standard & Poor's 500] Index in early 2014, and that [the] market will be higher by year's end."

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How much higher?

"We suspect 2014 may be a good, but not a great year for the broader market (high single-digit to low double-digit return), with a higher level of volatility, and that relative strength-based sector exposure will be key to outperformance," Johnson writes.

A move to 2,000 would represent an 8 percent increase from Tuesday's close of 1,848 for the S&P 500. The index generated a return of 29.6 percent in 2013.

This year's stock rally has largely been built on value stocks, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The 100 stocks in the S&P 500 with the lowest price-earnings ratios gained an average of 41 percent in the first 11 months of the year, compared with a 27 percent rise for the S&P 500, according to Fidelity Investments,

"It's not a high-growth, really-get-excited environment," Christopher Bartel, senior vice president of equity research at Fidelity, tells The Journal. "That, in a lot of ways, is positive. It's not too hot, it's not too cold."

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