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Stifel CEO: We Are Seeing a Shift in the Stock Market

Stifel chairman and CEO Ronald J. Kruszewski has seen just about everything in his 21 years leading the boutique investment bank. TheStreet gets his thoughts on the market as we close the book on the first-quarter.

With the return of broader market volatility and a surprise selloff in hot tech stocks like Amazon (AMZN) - Get Amazon.com, Inc. Report this month, who else better to diagnose the market than Stifel Financial Corp. (SF) - Get Stifel Financial Corp. Report chairman and CEO Ronald J. Kruszewski.

Kruszewski has been the longest-serving CEO among the major investment banks, taking the helm in 1997. As Stifel's CEO, he has navigated the highs of a tech stock boom (1999), the lows of a tech stock bust (2000) and the super lows of the Great Recession (2009). So let's just say his views on the market, at this latest critical juncture, are no joke. 

"It's interesting times -- I think what we are seeing is a shift in the markets," Kruszewski told TheStreet inside Stifel's Manhattan, New York headquarters. "We have been in a period of low interest rates, low inflation and low growth and that has promoted passive investing and high price-to-earnings multiple stocks."

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Added Kruszewski, "Now we are going to change, where you will get higher growth and higher interest rates and the market is going to be more volatile -- it's going to be a stock-picker's market."

Jim Cramer and the Action Alerts Plus team hold a position in Amazon for their Action Alerts PLUS Charitable Trust Portfolio. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells AMZN? Learn more now.

Watch our Full interview with Stifel's CEO on Youtube