The S&P 500 will fall 8% by the end of 2020, according to Bank of America’s equity chief, who says a Joe Biden victory could tank stocks

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  • Bank of America’s head of equity research predicts the S&P 500 index will fall to 2,900 by the end of the year, an 8% decline from current levels, MarketWatch said.
  • “I wouldn’t paint myself as a bear, but the risks between here and year-end are completely to the downside,” Savita Subramanaian said in a webinar conducted by the bank.
  • She pointed out that a Joe Biden victory in November could reverse market-friendly policies, and push stocks lower.
  • For investors favoring stocks that benefit from the coronavirus, she recommended leaning towards consumer staples, industrials, technology, and financials instead.
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Some analysts have encouraged being bullish on stocks since mid-March.

Their reasons range from a relaxation in lockdown restrictions, zero cash rates, low bond yields, and a rapid healing of credit markets.

But Bank of America’s head of equity research, Savita Subramanian, takes a contrarian view, according to a report by MarketWatch, that cited a webinar conducted by the bank this week.

Her interpretation is that the S&P-500 index will fall to 2,900 points, an 8% decline from current levels. On Thursday, the index closed at 3,152.05.

“I wouldn’t paint myself as a bear, but the risks between here and year-end are completely to the downside,” Subramanaian said.

She did point out that stocks have rarely been this attractive compared to bonds, but that may not last.

In reference to spiking coronavirus cases after President Trump’s push for states to reopen the economy, she said: “We’ve had a reopening frenzy, and now we’re seeing payback.”

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Consumer spending will undergo a radical change for millennials who have already been witness to the effects of the financial crisis, the Great Recession, and the current pandemic, she said.

They may adopt a “recession- or even depression-like” spending inclination.

Over the last 20 years, globalization, falling interest rates, and tax cuts created a robust environment for international investors who participated in the stock market boom. 

But that trend now seems to be waning, and Subramanian is “really worried” that never-before-seen monetary stimulus towards the Covid-19 outbreak has fast-forwarded stock market growth levels.  

She said that a Joe Biden victory in November will reverse market-friendly policies. Trump has said that if Biden wins the presidential election, stocks and 401ks would “disintegrate and disappear.”

Subramanian thinks investors are ignorant of reality and that the “market isn’t pricing in an all-clear on the economy.”

While investors have been favoring stocks that benefit from the coronavirus, she thinks investors should lean towards consumer staples, industrials, technology, and financials.

Read More: Ed Hyman was named Wall Street’s best economist 39 times and called the tech bubble. He outlines 3 market drivers that are aligning for investors looking to capitalize on coronavirus chaos.

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