Many Wall Street strategists are dusting off their 2015 targets for the S&P 500 index and trimming them for 2016.

Crashing-oil prices and fears of a global recession threw cold water on the index’s performance in 2015, causing it to fall short of the average expected gain of about 10%. With a handful of trading days left in the year and the S&P 500 SPX, -0.94% closing at 2,061 on Thursday (for a 0.1% gain year to date), only a handful of the more bearish analysts can hope to meet their 2015 targets — and only if a Santa Claus rally plays out.

Optimism in the stock market took a hit in 2015. The average year-end 2016 target for the S&P 500 for the 10 strategists surveyed by MarketWatch is actually lower than the average of their original 2015 targets. At this time last year, the strategists had pegged the S&P 500 ending 2015 at an average of 2,201. For the end of 2016, those same analysts have an average target of 2,193.

Of primary concern to strategists going forward in 2016 is how divergent central-bank policies — the Federal Reserve tightening and the European Central Bank easing — will boost the dollar DXY, +0.44% and subsequently pressure earnings of U.S. companies doing business abroad. They’re also looking for heightened volatility and uncertainty during a presidential election year.

Read the Full Article: Source – Market Watch
Time For Truth: (Market Watch) – Wall Street’s forecast for 2016: Worse than 2015’s

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