bull market chalkboard

Wall Street strategists expecting strong market ahead in 2021

This is one of my favorite posts to write every year as we get to look back on Wall Street predictions and see how they panned out. We have done this in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 so it is a tradition to see which strategists did well and which missed the mark.

Last year, the strategists predicted a slight up year market for 2020 with an average target of +1.6%, 3283, for the S&P 500. Of course, no one predicted a global pandemic, and I doubt they would have forecast this number if they knew what was ahead. Despite the lockdown induced recession, the epic stimulus from the Fed and policy makers helped drive stock market indices to all time highs and the S&P finished at 3756, up over 16%.

Last year's biggest bull was CSFB's Jonathan Golub at 3425 and that wasn't very close. Second place was a three way tie with a prediction of 3400. Now let's take a look at their thoughts on 2020...

Predictions for 2020

After looking at all the Wall Street reports, here are the targets from Wall Street's top strategists.

wall street strategists outlook

The good news is that not one is predicting a down market for the S&P and the average sits at 4076 or +8%. This is one of the most bullish predictions since 2014. The only other super bullish period was heading into 2019 with the average prediction of +13% and the market blew by that by a wide margin. Hopefully this happens again in 2021!

The most bullish on the street is JP Morgan's Dubravko Lakos-Bujas with a target of 4400 which would be over a 17% gain!

The two bears on the list are Citi's Tobias Levkovich and BoA's Savita Subramanian with a target of 3800 essentially predicting a flat market.

Note that the Runnymede investment team will discuss our outlook on 2021 on our quarterly webcast in the next couple of weeks. If you are interested in attending, please email us at firm@runnymede.com.

Stock market nirvana ahead

Lakos-Bujas is the biggest bull on the street as he believes over $1 trillion will flow into stocks next year. He says this could be a "market nirvana" for stocks. He sees risks subsiding with the easing of the trade war, coronavirus vaccine progress and the conclusion of the US election.

"We're looking at about a trillion dollars worth of equity inflow/equity demand coming from systematic flows, hedge fund positioning, further retail buying, buybacks and very importantly, a continued rotation from non-equity into equity," Lakos-Bujas told CNBC. "So we're looking at a pretty positive environment especially for the first half of next year." 

The Timid Bears

Now onto the cautious views of street... Levkovich says that the rotation out of highly-valued technology stocks, the market’s biggest industry, is likely to hold back the S&P 500.

Subramanian says, "A lot of optimism is priced in already on vaccine/recovery." She noted vaccine execution and longer lockdowns are among the risks stocks will encounter next year.

What do you think will happen in 2021? Are you a bull or a bear for the New Year?

"bull market" by mikecohen1872 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

About the Author: Chris Wang

Chris Wang


Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Runnymede Capital Management, Inc.-"Runnymede"), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Runnymede.  Please remember that if you are a Runnymede client, it remains your responsibility to advise Runnymede, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services, or if you would like to impose, add, or to modify any reasonable restrictions to our investment advisory services. To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing. Runnymede is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of the blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice. A copy of the Runnymede's current written disclosure Brochure discussing our advisory services and fees is available for review upon request. Please Note: Runnymede does not make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy, timeliness, suitability, completeness, or relevance of any information prepared by any unaffiliated third party, whether linked to Runnymede's web site or blog or incorporated herein, and takes no responsibility for any such content. All such information is provided solely for convenience purposes only and all users thereof should be guided accordingly.

Search Website

Annuity Review Database

Follow Our Podcast

Google Podcasts
Apple Podcasts

Recent Posts