Thomas Lee Expects Market Dip in 2017

Managing partner and co-founder of Fundstrat Global Advisors, Thomas Lee, has changed his typically rosy tune about the direction the market will take in the year ahead, according to a Bloomberg article from last week.

Once the “most vocal champion on U.S. stocks,” the article says he is now “its biggest bear.” In a client note from earlier this month, Lee predicts that the S&P 500 will finish the year at 2,275, “about 3 percent lower than the median of 18 strategists surveyed by Bloomberg.” The article cites policy risk and yield curve adjustment as the driving factors, and says Lee expects the index to decline to 2,150 by mid-year before rebounding.

According to the article, Lee foresees a return of inflation and a potential increase of corporate business activity stemming from deregulation. While he projects a more conservative earnings expansion than some economists (11 percent versus 12.3 percent), Lee’s forecast “would still mark the S&P 500’s best year since 2010.”