20 Expert Market Outlooks for 2019

Wall Street's analysts and market experts have scores of unique investing ideas and perspectives as we begin the new year. But one common thought across dozens of 2019 market outlooks: Nothing will come easy for investors.

Where will the American stock market go in 2019? What sectors will shine - and which ones will fall to the back of the pack? Will Chinese equities rebound? Will cryptocurrencies find their way back into favored status among aggressive investors?

Experts from across the spectrum - from Wall Street's most prominent stock-analysis outfits to "boutique" shops that specialize in just one or two corners of the market - have delivered their market outlooks for 2019. Kiplinger's has published its own insights: our economic outlook and our guide on where to invest for the year. But we suggest also taking in the analyst community's views on stocks, bonds and beyond.

Digest these key 2019 market outlooks to find investment ideas that fit your portfolio in the new year. They include price targets for the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index, economic forecasts and various investing strategies.

U.S. GDP: Only Partial Steam Ahead

Getty Images

Focus: U.S. economy

Expert: JPMorgan Asset Management

First, we'll set the stage with JPMorgan Asset Management's 2019 investment outlook - specifically, its thoughts on U.S. economic growth in the coming year.

"Entering 2019, the U.S. economy looks remarkably healthy, with a recent acceleration in economic growth, unemployment near a 50-year low and inflation still low and steady. (In July 2019), the expansion should enter its 11th year, making this the longest U.S. expansion in over 150 years of recorded economic history. However, a continued soft landing, in the form of a slower but still steady non-inflationary expansion into 2020, will require both luck and prudence from policy makers."

JPMorgan's analysts do see real GDP slowing in 2019, for four reasons:

  • "First, the fiscal stimulus from tax cuts enacted late last year will begin to fade. ..."
  • "Second, higher mortgage rates and a lack of pent-up demand should continue to weigh on the very cyclical auto and housing sectors."
  • "Third, under our baseline assumptions, the trade conflict with China worsens entering 2019 with a ratcheting up of tariffs to 25% on USD 200 billion of U.S. goods. Even if the conflict does not escalate further, higher tariffs would likely hurt U.S. consumer spending and the uncertainty surrounding trade could dampen investment spending."
  • "Finally, a lack of workers could increasingly impede economic activity. ... With the unemployment rate now well below 4.0%, a lack of available workers may constrain economic activity, particularly in the construction, retail, food services and hospitality industries."

This theme of caution and prudence peppers many experts' market outlooks to come.

Slowing (But Still Growing!) Earnings to Propel U.S. Stocks

Getty Images

Focus: U.S. stocks/S&P 500 target

Expert: BofA Merrill Lynch

BofA Merrill Lynch, like JPMorgan Asset Management, expects the U.S. economy's growth to slow and sees a similar fate for American corporate earnings. Nonetheless, their stock-market outlook for 2019 is positive, with an S&P 500 price target that implies double-digit growth ahead.

"The Standard and Poor's 500 Index is expected to peak at or slightly above 3,000 before settling in at a year-end target of 2,900," which would be a 15.7% gain for the

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Kiplinger

Kiplinger4 min read
Stop Fighting, Start Planning: How to Build a Retirement That Satisfies Both Spouses
"We're fine." "I've got it covered." "We have plenty of money." "You don't have to worry; I left the password to the accounts by the computer." I hear these comments all the time from the husbands who come to my office. And then, in the same
Kiplinger12 min read
The Disruptors: 10 Innovative and Irritating Stock Picks
The idea of disruptors - single companies that (usually quickly) change the landscape of an entire industry or sector - isn't new. Henry Ford and Ford Motor (F) revolutionized automaking in the early 1990s. Phil Knight's Nike (NKE) forever altered th
Kiplinger11 min read
How to Pick the Online Broker That's Best for You
When it comes to satisfying their clients, brokerages are aiming at a moving target. And considering that different investors may have wildly different needs, maybe it's fairer to say that brokerages must hit several moving targets. Our 2019 online b