The bull market doesn't stop here.
After a stellar 2017, the S&P 500 Index will soar to 3,000 by the end of 2018, setting equities up for further gains on a double-digit return trajectory, according to Credit Suisse analysts in a Dec. 21 note.
Reaching 3,000 implies the index will rally about 12% in the next 12 months. While those gains would be strong, they would fall short of the nearly 20% increase the index has experienced this year.
"Our 2018 bullish call is based on 8% to 9% organic EPS growth plus modest multiple expansion," Credit Suisse wrote. Analysts added that 2018 earnings should experience an additional one-time bump of about 8% to 9% as the corporate tax rate drops to 21% from 27%.
"Our market view is primarily predicated on a supportive economic backdrop, a pickup in near-term indicators and benign recessionary risks," analysts said. "While we expect more muted longer-term growth, this has focused corporations on cost containment and the return of capital to shareholders, extended the current business cycle and lowered discount rates."
In the near-term, global economic data from the past year has inflected higher while inflation has remained low, analysts said. For the medium-term, recessionary risk is quite low despite the age of the bull market, which is closing in on 10 years. And in the longer-term, Credit Suisse said, "slower growth extends the business cycle, driving down volatility and discount rates, while also promoting cost vigilance and the return of capital."
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