With the market desperately trying to put February's brutal correction in the rear-view mirror, Wall Street remains divided on what to do next: recommend buying stocks or stay skeptical of any rallies.
"The correction taught them [investors] that there is risk, but I don't think they fully learned their lesson though," Byron Wien, Vice Chairman in the Private Wealth Solutions of Blackstone Group (BX) , told TheStreet. "Now that the market has turned around so sharply, everyone is complacent again -- I think they have to have some of that complacency beaten out of them."
To be sure, blunt words from Wien -- but ones uttered from the 86-year old's decades living through market cycles on Wall Street. Wien expects the market to test the correction lows seen this month, then go onto rally in the second half of the year. His advice right now to the common investor at home that's watching stocks suddenly dance all over the place? Pay attention to tried and true investing disciplines.
"They should pay a lot of attention to their conviction about the earnings growth rate and the multiple they are paying -- they should have a firm valuation discipline and when stock prices get beyond that, they shouldn't be buyers," Wien explains.
Keep in mind that Wien doesn't say move all into cash and forget stocks exist. Money could still be made in a post-correction market, you just have to be sharp. That's the general takeaway from another top mind on Wall Street.
"The answer [right now] is to focus on strategies that immunize the portfolio from rising interest rates," says Gluskin Sheff strategist David Rosenberg. "Allocate your asset mix towards tactical and opportunistic strategies that can take advantage of heightened volatility. Rosenberg suggests putting money to work in credit hedge funds. These funds encompass long-short strategies that lock in the yield spread between high quality corporate bonds and government debt.
Have no access to these types of products and yearn to buy stocks at lower valuations that January's melt-up period? Check out beaten up household names, explains TheStreet's founder and Action Alerts Plus portfolio manager Jim Cramer. Some names that come to mind include Caterpillar (CAT) , Chevron (CVX) , Apple (AAPL) and Intel (INTC) .
Meanwhile, TheStreet's top editors suggest sticking with companies that have solid business models and rising dividends. Action Alerts Plus holding Microsoft (MSFT) and Home Depot (HD) fall into this category.
Says Wien, "I still think the market will end the year higher than we started, I just think we will go down and test the lows again." Cheers to the former.
TheStreet's webshow Jolt has you covered ahead of another big week for markets. Watch below.