Last week’s stock market decline may be the low from which the market will rebound from, according to BlackRock’s chief equity strategist Bob Doll.
Overall, last week’s early sell-off and rally left the markets down between 1.5% and 3%, but Doll remained optimistic in his Monday commentary. Despite the turmoil in the Middle East and the potential for nuclear catastrophe in Japan, he wrote, “our assessment is that none of these risks have yet derailed or will derail, the global economic recovery or the longer-term bull market in equities.”
Doll wrote that he doesn’t expect noticeable inflation in the developed world sees “pretty solid momentum” in the global economy.
In the Middle East, the biggest “wild card,” he says, is Saudia Arabia, where political disruption would have a bigger impact than what we have seen so far. However, “Saudia Arabia’s economic and political systems are more stable than those of its neighbors,” he wrote.
In Japan, he expects reconstruction efforts will make a drag on growth a temporary problem, unless oil prices rise significantly or the nuclear crisis gets worse.
In the United States, he said that the Federal Reserve is gaining more confidence in the economy. “At the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting last week, central bankers acknowledged the risks of higher oil prices, but also indicated that the Fed had a more upbeat assessment of the overall economy. Corporate profits have remained strong and preliminary indications are that corporations are not being negatively affected by the increase in energy costs. Indeed, corporate hiring plans have been accelerating, and we believe that jobs growth should continue.”