Oppenheimer’s John Stoltzfus raised his year-end S&P 500 target 200 points on Monday, based on expectations of better earnings and economic growth.
U.S. economic growth of about 2 to 2.5 percent — even without any added federal stimulus — and improving global growth means “corporate revenues and earnings could rise further [and] warrant higher prices for stocks,” Stoltzfus, chief investment strategist at Oppenheimer Asset Management, said in a note Monday.
His new 2,650 target reflects a 7 percent gain from Friday’s near-record close of 2,472 and is the second-highest of the 16 strategists surveyed by CNBC. Only Morgan Stanley’s 2,700 target, officially a 12-month forecast, is higher.
In a separate report Monday, Morgan Stanley’s Mike Wilson reiterated his 2,700 target and noted how sell-side U.S. equity strategists on average expect the S&P to end the year below its current level.
Including the Oppenheimer forecast, the median year-end S&P 500 target of 16 strategists surveyed by CNBC is 2,475, just three points above where the S&P closed Friday.
Part of Stoltzfus’ case for stocks to rise is a decline in U.S. dollar strength.
“A modestly weaker dollar can help to improve the competitiveness of S&P 500 US multinational companies doing business across the globe,” he said. “This could well serve earnings seasons in the quarters ahead.”