NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen will testify in front of a Senate panel Tuesday while investors anxiously listen to hear any possible interest rate implications going forward.
Yellen's comments will likely drive the market over the next few weeks, Joseph Terranova, chief market strategist for Virtus Investment Partners, said on Monday's CNBC "Fast Money Halftime" TV show. However, the market looks likely to go higher for the next few weeks.
Investors have already voted, basically saying that they're prepared for an increase in interest rates, according to Josh Brown, CEO and co-founder of Ritholtz Wealth Management. Investors will be ready and appear confident, buying heavily into growth stocks. He pointed out that biotech stocks have climbed for seven straight sessions and are already up 12% on the year.
If there is anything in Yellen's report about when rates will be hiked, there will likely be a "knee-jerk" reaction to the downside, said Stephen Weiss, founder and managing partner of Short Hills Capital Partners LLC. But honestly, a rate hike of such small proportions shouldn't matter.
In fact, when looking at the long-term trends, stocks tend to do well in a rising interest rate environment, provided that rates are moving higher because the economy is doing well, Weiss added.
The European Central Bank over-delivered when it came to its stimulus measures and the U.S. markets continue to look attractive. It's still "all systems go," Weiss argued. Historically, average interest rates tend to be closer to 5%, meaning an increase to 0.25% or 0.5% shouldn't make much of a difference.
There will likely be a knee-jerk reaction, said Pete Najarian, co-founder of optionmonster.com and trademonster.com, but it could create plenty of buying opportunities.
Najarian also pointed out the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX.X) is now below $15. Investors looking for some protection going forward, can use the index to protect their portfolio in times of heightened volatility.
Even if a rate hike happens because the economy is getting better, investors still need time to digest that news, said Larry Glazer, managing partners at Mayflower Advisors. U.S. stocks are no longer the best trade, as international stocks have lower valuations, he reasoned. The recent deal with Greece will keep the euro under pressure, which is good for the European economy. International markets have "valuation and momentum coinciding," which is a good recipe for investors, he concluded.
While investors shouldn't rule out investing overseas, they should consider that many European indices are already at all-time highs, Weiss warned. He suggested buying on a stock-by-stock basis.
Stick to Japanese, U.K. and German stocks, Terranova added.
The conversation turned to oil, as West Texas Intermediate prices fell another 2.5% on Monday. The commodity is now down 7.9% over the past five trading sessions.
But oil's downward spiral may come to an end sooner than investors think, as Money.net's CEO Morgan Downey predicts that oil prices will rebound to the $75 to $100 per barrel range sometime in the second half of 2015. After that, oil prices could climb back to $100 per barrel in the first half of 2016.
As for the next few months, He predicts that prices will stay between $45 and $65 per barrel in the first half of this year. U.S. oil production has slowed and the rig counts have declined. Other factors, like demand and increased production from Libya have already been priced into oil, he argued.
For their final trades, Terranova is buying Newmont Mining (NEM - Get Report) and Brown is a buyer of Deere & Company (DE - Get Report) . Najarian said to buy ZioPharm Oncology (ZIOP) and Weiss is buying Salix Pharmaceuticals (SLXP) .