Investment Roundtable: The road to profits in 2015

Investment Roundtable The road to profits in 2015

Distrustful investors will be pleasantly surprised when they find out there is even more money to be made in stocks next year. That was the clear and unanimous message of top Wall Street money managers and strategists who gathered for the 2015 USA TODAY Investment Roundtable.

The Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index is up 10% in 2014. It has tripled in value since the bull market began in 2009. And outside of some pockets, such as the Nasdaq composite which still hasn’t topped its 2000 peak, the market has been cruising to new record highs on a regular basis.

And individual investors, who are still fuming over the financial crisis, have stayed on the sidelines, missing out on a big chunk of the gains.

This is “one of the most hated bull markets in equities of all time,” declares Dan Chung, CEO and chief investment officer at Alger.

Playing the stock market and winning is never easy. And 2015 brings with it a whole new set of challenges — and potentially turbulent transitions — that will keep investors on high alert, but which won’t necessarily rule out another year of profits for the nearly six-year-old bull market.

That’s the market call from the four Wall Street pros who weighed in on where financial markets are headed next year at USA TODAY’s 19th annual Investment Roundtable, held on Dec. 5 in New York.

Big changes are on the way, the panelists say.

• The Federal Reserve’s first interest-rate hike since 2006 is in the pipeline.

• Volatility — code word for wild and scary price swings on Wall Street — is expected to make a comeback.

Adding to the 2015 angst: the record-setting S&P 500, which has posted 49 record closes in 2014 and is trading near all-time highs, isn’t dirt cheap anymore; in fact, the market’s price-to-earnings ratio is a little bit on the expensive side, history says.




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